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. I 



en. William T. Sherman 




o which are added chapters completing his lifb, and including his 

Funeral Obsequies. Prepared by 



Major-General O. O. HOWARD, U. S. A. 





^^r LIBRARY ~-^ 


Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1875, by 


in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington, D. C. 





XV. — Atlanta Campaign — Nashtille and Chattanooga to Kknisaw — 

March, April, and Mat, 1864 6 

XVI. — Atlanta Campaign — Battles about Eenesaw Mountain — June, 

1864 50 

XVII. — Atlanta Campaign — BIttles about .AiLANTi<r-JuLT, 1864 . . 65 

XVni. — Capture of Atlanta — August and September, 1864 ... 96 

XIX. — Atlanta and after — Pursuit of Hood — Seftsmbkr and October, 

1864 137 

XX — The March to the Sea — From Atlanta to Savannah — ^Notembee 

AND December, 1864 171 

XXI. — Satannah and Pocotalioo — ^December, 1864, and January, 1865 . 230 

XXII. — Campaign of the Carolinas — ^February and March, 1865 . 268 

XXIII. — End of the War — From Goldsboro' to Baleigh and Washing- 
ton—April AND Mat, 1865 322 


A Military Map, showing the Marches of the United States Forces 
UNDER General Sherman's Command . ... At end of Volume. 

(Inserted by the Publishers.) 







On the IStli day of March, 1861, at Nashville, Tennessee, 
I relieved Lientenant-General Grant in command of the Mili- 
tary Division of the Mississippi, embracing the Departments 
of the Ohio, Cumberland, Tennessee, and Arkansas, commanded 
respectively by Major-Gencrals Schofield, Thomas, McFherson, 
and Steele. General Grant was in the act of starting East to 
assume command of all the armies of the United States, but 
more particularly to give direction in person to the Armies 
of the Potomac and James, operating against Bichmond ; and I 
accompanied him as far as Cincinnati on his way, to avail my- 
self of the opportunity to discuss privately many little details 
incident to the contemplated changes, and of preparation for 
the great events then impending. Among these was the in- 
tended assignment to duty of many officers of note and influ- 
ence, who had, by the force of events, drifted into inactivity 
and discontent. Among these stood prominent Generals Mc- 
Clellan, Bumside, and Fremont, in the East; and Generals 
Buell, McCook, Negley, and Crittenden, at the West. My un- 
derstanding was that General Grant thought it wise and pru- 
dent to give all these officers appropriate commands, that would 


enable them to regain the influence they had lost ; and, as a 
general reorganization of all the armies was then necessaiy, he 
directed me to keep in mind especially the claims of Generals 
Buell, McCook, and Crittenden, and endeavor to give them 
commands that would be as near their rank and dates of com- 
mission as possible; but I was to do nothing until I heard 
further from him on the subject, as he explained that he would 
have to consult the Secretaiy of War before making final orders. 
General Buell and his officers had been subjected to a long ordeal 
by a court of inquiry, touching their conduct of the campaign 
in Tennessee and Kentucky, that resulted in the battle of Perry- 
ville, or Chaplin's Hills, October 8, 1862, and they had been 
substantially acquitted ; and, as it was manifest that we were to 
have some hard fighting, we- were anxious to bring into harmony 
every man and every officer of skill in the profession of arms. 
Of these. Generals Buell and McClellan were prominent in 
rank, and also by reason of their fame acquired in Mexico, as 
well as in the earlier part of the civil war. 

After my return to Nashville I addressed myself to the task 
of organization and preparation, which involved the general secu- 
rity of the vast region of the South which had been already con- 
quered, more especially the several routes of supply and commu- 
nication with the active armies at the front, and to organize a 
large army to move into Georgia, coincident with the advance 
of the Eastern armies against Eichmond. I soon received from 
Colonel J. B. Fry — ^now of the Adjutant-General's Department, 
but then at Wadiington in charge of the Provost-Marshal-Gten- 
eraPs office — ^a letter asking me to do something for General 
Buell. I answered him frankly, telling him of my understand- 
ing with General Grant, and that I was still awaiting the ex- 
pected order of the War Department, assigning General Bnell 
to my conmiand. Colonel Fry, as General BueU's special friend, 
replied that he was very anxious that I should make specific ap- 
plication for the services of General Buell by name, and inqnired 
what I proposed to offer hinu To this I answered that, after the 
agreement with General Grant that he would notify me from 
Washington, I could not with propriety press the matter, but if 


General Buell should be assigned to me specifically I was pre- 
pared to assign him to command all the troops on the Missis- 
sippi Eiver from Cairo to Natchez, comprising about three divi- 
sions, or the equivalent of a corps d^armee. General Grant 
never afterward communicated to me on the subject at all ; and 
I inferred that Mr. Stanton, who was notoriously vindictive in 
his prejudices, would not consent to the employment of these 
high officers. General Buell, toward the dose of the war, pub- 
lished a bitter political letter, aimed at General Grant, reflecting 
on his general management of the war, and stated that both 
Generals Canby and Sherman had offered him a subordinate 
command, which he had declined because he had once out- 
ranked us. This was not true as to me, or Canby either, I 
think, for both General Canby and I ranked him at West Point 
and in the old army, and he (General Buell) was only superior 
to us in the date of his commission as major-general, for a short 
period in 1862. This newspaper communication, though aimed 
at General Grant, reacted on himself, for it closed his military 
career. General Crittenden afterward obtained authority for 
service, and I offered him a division, but he declined it for the 
reason, as I understood it, that he had at one time commanded 
a corps. He is now in the United States service, commanding 
the Seventeenth Infantry. General McCook obtained a com- 
mand under General Canby, in the Department of the Gulf, 
where he rendered good service, and he is also in the regular 
service, lieutenant-colonel Tenth Infantry. 

I returned to Nashville from Cincinnati about the 25th of 
March, and started at once, in a special car attached to the regu- 
lar train, to inspect my command at the front, going to Pidaski, 
Tennessee, where I found General G. M. Dodge; thence to 
Huntsville, Alabama, where I had left a part of my personal 
staff and the records of the department during the time we had 
been absent at Meridian ; and there I found General McPher- 
son, who had arrived from Vicksburg, and had assumed com- 
mand of the Army of the Tennessee. General McPherson ac- 
companied me, and we proceeded by the cars to Stevenson, 
Bridgeport, etc., to Chattanooga, where we spent a day or two 


with General George H. Thomas, and then contdnned on to 
Knoxville, where was General Schofield. He returned with 
us to Chattanooga, stoppmg by the way a few hours at Loudon, 
where were the headquarters of the Fourth Corps (Major-Gen- 
eral Gordon Granger). General Granger, as usual, was full of 
complaints at the treatment of his corps since I had left him 
with General Bumside, at Knoxville, the preceding November ; 
and he stated to me personally that he had a leave of absence in 
his pocket, of which he intended to take advantage very soon. 
About the end of March, therefore, the three army commanders 
and myself were together at Chattanooga. We had nothing like 
a council of war, but conversed freely and frankly on all matters 
of interest then in progress or impending. We all knew that, 
as soon as the spring was fairly open, we should have to move 
directly against our antagonist. General Jos. E. Johnston, then 
securely intrenched at Dalton, thirty miles distant; and the 
purpose of our conference at the time was to ascertain our own 
resources, and to distribute to each part of the army its appro- 
priate share of work. Wo discussed every possible contingency 
likely to arise, and I simply instructed each army commander to 
make immediate preparations for a hard campaign, regulating 
the distribution of supplies that were coming up by rail from 
Nashville as equitably as possible. We also agreed on some 
subordinate changes in the organization of the three separate 
armies which were destined to take the field ; among which was 
the consolidation of the Eleventh and Twelfth Corps (Howard 
and Slocum) into a single corps, to be commanded by General 
Jos. Hooker. General Howard was to be, transferred to the 
Fourth Corps, vi<;e Gordon Granger to avail himself of his leave 
of absence ; and General Slocum was to be ordered down the 
Mississippi Eiver, to command the District of Vicksburg. These 
changes required the consent of the President, and were all in 
due time approved. 

The great question of the campaign was one of supplies. 
Nashville, our chief depot, was itself partially in a hostile coun- 
try, and even the routes of supply from Louisville to Nashville 
by rail, and by way of the Cumberland River, had to be guarded. 

1864.] ATLAlirrA CAMPAIGN. . 9 

Chattanooga (our startmg-point) was one hnndrcxi and thirty- 
six miles in front of Nashville, and every foot of the way, espe- 
cially the many bridges, trestles, and culverts, had to be strong- 
ly guarded against the acts of a local hostile population and of 
the enemy's cavalry. Then, of course, as we advanced into 
Georgia, it was manifest that we should have to repair the rail- 
road, use it, and guard it likewise. General Thomases army 
was much the largest of the three, was best provided, and con- 
tained the best corps of engineers, railroad managers, and repair 
parties, as well as the best body of spies and provost-marshals. 
On him we were therefore compelled in a great measure to rely 
for these most useful branches of service. He had so long exer- 
cised absolute command and control over the railroads in his 
department, that the other armies were jealous, and these 
thought the Army of the Cumberland got the lion's share of 
the supplies and other advantages of the railroads. I found a 
good deal of feeling in the Army of the Tennessee on this score, 
and therefore took supreme control of the roads myself, placed 
all the army commanders on an equal footing, and gave to each 
the same control, so far as orders of transportation for men and 
stores were concerned. Thomas's spies brought him frequent 
and accurate reports of Jos. Johnston's army at Dalton, giving 
its strength anywhere between forty and fifty thousand men, 
and these were being reenforced by troops from Mississippi, and 
by the Georgia militia, under General G. "W. Smith. General 
Johnston seemed to be acting purely on the defensive, so that 
we had time and leisure to take all our measures deliberately 
and fully. I fixed the date of May 1st, when all things should 
be in readiness for the grand forward movement, and then re- 
turned to Nashville ; General Schofield going back to Knoxville, 
and McPherson to Huntsville, Thomas remaining at Chatta- 

On the 2d of April, at Nashville, I wrote to General Grant, 
then at Washington, reporting to him the results of my visit to 
the several armies, and asked his consent to the several changes 
proposed, which was promptly given by telegraph. I then ad- 
dressed myself specially to the troublesome question of trans- 

10 ATLANTA 0A2fl»AIGN. [1864. 

portation and supplies. I found the capacity of the railroads 
from Nashville forward to Decatur, and to Chattanooga, so 
small, especially in the number of locomotives and cars, that it 
was dear that they were barely able to supply the daily wants of 
the armies then dependent on them, with no power of accumu- 
lating a surplus in advance. The cars were daily loaded down 
with men returning from furlough, with cattle, horses, etc. ; and, 
by reason of the previous desolation of the country between 
Chattanooga and Knoxville, General Thomas had authorized the 
issue of provisions to the suffering inhabitants. 

•We could not attempt an advance into Georgia without food, 
ammunition, etc. ; and ordinary prudence dictated that we should 
have an accumulation at the front, in case of interruption to the 
railway by the act of the enemy, or by common accident. Ac- 
cordingly, on the 6th of April, I issued a general order, limiting 
the use of the railroad-cars to transporting only the essential 
articles of food, ammunition, and supplies for the army proper, 
forbidding any further issaes to citizens, and cutting off all civil 
traffic ;. requiring the commanders of posts within thii-ty miles 
of Nashville to haul out their own stores in wagons; re- 
quiring all troops destined for the front to march, and all beef- 
cattle to be driven on their own legs. This was a great help, 
but of course it naturally raised a howl. Some of the poor 
Union people of East Tennessee appealed to President Lincoln, 
whose kind heart responded promptly to their request. He 
telegraphed me to know if I could not modify or repeal my 
orders ; but I answered him that a great campaign was impend- 
ing, on which the fate of the nation hung ; that our raOroads 
had but a limited capacity, and could not provide for the neces- 
sities of the army and of the people too ; tliat one or the other 
must quit, and we could not imtil the army of Jos. Johnston 
was conquered, etc, etc. Mr. Lincoln seemed to acquiesce, and 
[ advised the people to obtain and drive out cattle from Ken- 
tucky, and to haul out their supplies by the wagon-road from 
the same quarter, by way of Cumberland Gap. By these 
changes I nearly or quite doubled our daily accumulation of 
stores at the front, and yet even this was not found enough. 


I accordingly called together in Nashville the master of trans- 
portation, Colonel Anderson, the chief quartermaster, General 
J. L, Donaldson, and the chief commissary, General Amos Beck- 
with, for conference. I assumed the strength of the army to move 
from Chattanooga into Georgia at one hundred thousand men, and 
the number of animals to be fed, both for cavalry and draught, 
at thirty-five thousand; then, allowing for occasional wrecks 
of trains, which were very common, and for the interrup- 
tion of the road itself by guerrillas and regular raids, we es- 
timated it woxdd require one hundred and thirty cars, of ten tons 
each, to reach Chattanooga daily, to be reasonably certain of an 
adequate supply. Even with this calculation, we could not 
afford to bring forward hay for the horses and mules, nor more 
than five pounds of oats or com per day for each animal. I was 
willing to risk the question of forage in part, because I expected 
to find wheat and com fields, and a good deal of grass, as we 
advanced into Georgia at that season of the year. The problem 
then was to deliver at Chattanooga and beyond one hxmdred and 
thirty car-loads daily, leaving the beef -cattle to be driven on the 
hoof, and all the troops in excess of the usual train-guards to 
march by the ordinary roads. Colonel Anderson promptly ex- 
plained that he did not possess cars or locomotives enough to do 
this work. I then instructed and authorized him to hold on to 
all trains that arrived at Nashville from Louisville, and to allow 
none to go back until he had secured enough to fill the require- 
ments of our problem. At the time he only had about sixty 
serviceable locomotives, and about six hxmdred cars of all kind^ 
and he represented that to provide for all contingencies he 
must have at least one hundred locomotives and one thousand 
cars. As soon as Mr. Guthrie, the President of the Louisville & 
Nashville Kailroad, detected that we were holding on to all his 
locomotives and cars, he wrote me, earnestly remonstrating 
against it, saying that he would not be able with diminished 
stock to bring forward the necessary stores from Louisville to 
Nashville. I wrote to him, frankly telling him exactly how we 
were placed, appealed to his patriotism to stand by us, and 
advised him in like manner to hold on to all trains coming into 


Jeffersonville, Indiana. He and General Eobert Allen, then 
quartermaster-general at Louisville, arranged a ferry-boat bo as 
to transfer the trains over the Ohio Kiver from Jeficrsonyilley 
and in a short time we had cars and locomotives from almost 
every road at the North ; months afterward I was amused to see, 
away down in Georgia, cars marked " Pittsburg & Fort "Wayne," 
" Delaware & Lackawanna," " Baltimore & Ohio," and indeed 
with the names of almost every railroad north of the Ohio River. 
How these railroad companies ever recovered their property, or 
settled their transportation accounts, I have never heard, but to 
this fact, as much as to any other single fact, I attribute the per- 
fect success which afterward attended our campaigns ; and I have 
always felt grateful to Mr. Gtithrie, of Louisville, who had sense 
\ enough and patriotism enough to subordinate the interests of 
his railroad company to the cause of his country. 

About this time, viz., the early part of April, I was much 
disturbed by a bold raid made by the rebel General Forrest up 
between the Mississippi and Tennessee Rivers. He reached the 
Ohio River .at Paducah, but was handsomely repulsed by Colo- 
nel Hicks. He then swung down toward Memphis, assaulted 
and carried Fort Pillow, massacring a part of its garrison, com- 
posed wholly of negro troops. At first I discredited the story 
of the massacre, because, in preparing for the Meridian cam- 
paign, I had ordered Fort Pillow to be evacuated, but it trans- 
pired afterward that General Hurlbut had retained a small 
garrison at Fort PiUow to encourage the enlistment of the 
blacks as soldiers, which was a favorite political policy at that 
/day. The massacre at Fort Pillow occurred April 12, 1864, 
V and has been the subject of congressional inquiry. No doubt 
Forrest's men acted like a set of barbarians, shooting down the 
helpless n^o garrison after the fort was in their possession; 
but I am told that Forrest personally disclaims any active par- 
ticipation in the assault, and that he stopped the firing as soon 
as he could. I also take it for granted that Forrest did not 
lead the assault in person, and consequently that he was to the 
rear, out of sight if not of hearing at the time, and I was told 
by hundreds of our men, who were at various times prisoners in 


Forrest's possession, that lie was usually very kind to them. He 
had a desperate set of fellows under him, and at that very time 
there is no doubt the feeling of the Southern people was fear- 
fully savage on this very point of our making soldiers out of 
their late slaves, and Forrest may have shared the feeling. 

I also had another serious cause of disturbance about that 
time. I wanted badly the two divisions of troops which had 
been loaned to General Banks in the month of March pre- 
viously, with the express understanding that their absence was 
to endure only one month, and that during April ihey were to 
come out of Eed Kiver, and be again within the sphere of my 
command. I accordingly instructed one of my inspector-gen- 
erals, John M. Corse, to take a fleet steamboat at Kashville, 
proceed via Cairo, Memphis, and Vicksburg, to General Banks 
up the Eed River, and to deliver the following letter of April 
8d, as also others, of like tenor, to Generals A. J. Smith and 
Fred Steele, who were supposed to be with him : 


Nabhvills, TxsnxEBSKEf AjrH 8, 18G4. ) 

Major-Oeneral N. P. Banes, commanding Department qf the Qulf^ Eed 

Genebal : The thirty days for which I loaned yon the command of 
General A. J. Smith will expire on the 10th instant I send with this 
Brigadier-General J. M. Corse, to carry orders to General A. J. Smith, 
and to give directions for a new movement, which is preliminary to the 
general campaign. General Corse may see yon and explain in full, hnt, lest 
he should not find yon in person, I will simply state that Forrest, availing 
himself of the absence of onr fnrlonghed men and of the detachment with 
yon, has pushed up between the Mississippi and Tennessee Rivers, even to 
the Ohio. He attacked Padncah, hnt got the worst of it, and he still 
lingers abont the place. I hope that he will remain thereabouts till General 
A. J. Smith can reach his destined point, bnt this I can hardly expect ; yet 
I want him to reach by the Yazoo a position near Grenada, thence to 
operate against Forrest, after which to march across to Decatnr, Alabama. 
Yon will see that he has a big job, and therefore should start at once. 
From all that I can learn, my troops reached Alexandria, Louisiana, at the 
time agreed on, viz., March 17th, and I hear of them at Natchitoches, but 
cannot hear of your troops being above Opelousast 

Steele is also moving. I leave Steele's entire force to co(^perate with 


70a and the navy, but, as I before stated, I must have A. J. Smithes troops 
now as soon as possible. 

I beg 70a will expedite their return to Yicksburg, if they have not 
already started, and I want them if possible to remain in the same boats 
they have used up Red River, as it will save the time, otherwise con- 
sumed in transfer to other boats. 

All is well in this quarter, and I hope by the time you turn against 
Mobile our forces will again act toward the same end, though from distant 
points. General Grant, now having lawful control, will doubtless see that 
all minor objects are disregarded, and that all the armies act on a common 

Hoping, when this reaches you, that you will be in possession of Shreve- 
port, I am, with great respect, etc., 

W. T. SnssMAN, Major- General commanding, 

Eumors were reaching us thick and fast of defeat and disas- 
ter in that qnarter ; and I feared then, what afterward actually 
happened, that neither General Banks nor Admiral Porter 
could or would spare those two divisions. On the 23d of April, 
General Corse returned, biinging full answers to my letters, and 
I saw that we must go on without them. This was a serious 
loss to the Army of the Tennessee, which was also short by two 
other divisions that were on their veteran furlough, and were 
under orders to rendezvous at Cairo, before embarking for Clif- 
ton, on the Tennessee Eiver. 

On the 10th of April, 1864, the headquarters of the three 
Armies of the Cumberland, Tennessee, and Ohio, were at Chat- 
tanooga, Hxmtsville, and Enoxville, and the tables on page 16, 
et seq,^ give their exact condition and strength. 

The Department of the Arkansas was then subject to my com- 
mand, but General Fred Steele, its commander, was at Little 
Rock, remote from me, acting in cooperation with General BankSi 
and had full employment for every soldier of his command ; so 
that I never depended on him for any men, or for any participa- 
tibn in the Georgia campaign. Soon after, viz.. May 8th, that 
department was transferred to the Military Division of "the 
Gulf," or " Southwest," Major-General E. E. S. Canby com- 
manding, and General Steele served with him in the subsequent 
movement against Mobile. 


In Generals Thomas, HcPherson, and Schofleld, I had three 
generals of education and experience, admirably qualified for the 
work before us. Each has made a history of his own, and I 
need not here dwell on their respective merits as men, or as com- 
manders of armies, except that each possessed special qualities 
of mind and of character which fitted them in the highest de- 
gree for the work then in contemplation. 

By the returns of April 10, 1864, it will be seen that the 
Army of the Cumberland had on its muster-rolls — 


Present and absent 171,450 

Present for duty 88,883 

The Army of the Tennessee — 


Present and absent 134,763 

Present for duty 64,957 

The Army of the Ohio — 


Present and absent 46,052 

Present for duty 26,242 

The depailment and army comimanders had to maintain 
strong garrisons in their respective departments, and also to 
guard their respective lines of supply. I therefore, in my mind, 
aimed to prepare out of these three armies, by the 1st of May, 
1864, a compact army for active operations in Georgia, of 
about the following numbers : 


Army of the Cumberland 50,000 

Army of the Tennessee 85,000 

Army of the Ohio 15,000 

Total 100,000 

and, to make these troops as mobile as possible, I made the 
strictest possible orders in relation to wagons and all species of 
incumbrances and impedimenta whatever. Each officer and sol- 
dier was required to carry on his horse or person food and cloth- 
ing enough for five days. To each regiment was allowed but 
one wagon and one ambulance, and to the officers of each com- 
pany one pack-horse or mule. 






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Each division and br'gade was provided a fair proportion of 
wagons for a supply-train, and these were limited in their load* 
to carry food, ammunition, and clothing. Tents were forbidden 
to all save the sick and wounded, and one tent only was allowed 
to each headquarters for use as an office. These orders were not 
absolutely enforced, though in person I set the example, and did 
not have a tent, nor did any officer about me have one ; but we had 
wall tent-ffies, without poles, and no tent-furniture of any kind. 
We usually spread our ffies over saplings, or on fence-rails or posts 
improvised on the spot. Most of the general officers, except 
Thomas, followed my example strictly ; but he had a regular 
headquarters-camp. I frequently called his attention to the or- 
ders on this subject, rather jestingly than seriously. He would 
break out against his officers for having such luxuries, but, need- 
ing a tent himself, and being good-natured and slow to act, he 
never enforced my orders perfectly. In addition to his regular 
wagon-train, he had a big wagon which could be converted into 
an office, and this we used to call " Thomas's circus." Several 
times during tlie campaign I found quartermasters hid away in 
some comfortable nook to the rear, with tents and mess-fixtures 
which were the envy of the passing soldiers ; and I frequently 
broke them up, and distributed the tents to the surgeons of bri- 
gades. Yet my orders actually reduced the transportation, so 
that I doubt if any army ever went forth to battle with fewer 
impedimenta, and where the regular and necessary supplies of 
food, anmiunition, and clothing, were issued, as called for, so 
regularly and so well. 

My personal staflE was then composed of Captain J. C. McCoy, 
aide-de-camp ; Captain L. M. Dayton, aide-de-camp ; Captain J. 
C. Audenried, aide-de-camp; Brigadier-General J. D. Webster, 
chief of staff ; Major K. M. Sawyer, assistant adjutant-general ; 
Captain Montgomery Rochester, assistant adjutant-general. 
These last three were left at Nashville in charge of the office, 
and were empowered to give orders in my name, communication 
being generally kept up by telegraph. 

Subsequently were added to my staff, and accompanied me 
in the field, Brigadier-General W. F. Barry, chief of artillery ; 


Colonel O. M. Poe, chief of engmeers ; Colonel L. 0. Easton, 
chief quartermaster; Colonel Amos Beckwith, chief commissa- 
ry ; Captain Thos. G. Baylor, chief of ordnance ; Surgeon E. D. 
Kittoe, medical director; Brigadier-General J. M. Corse, in- 
spector-general ; Lieutenant-Colonel C. Ewing, inspector-gen- 
eral ; and Lieutenant-Colonel Willard Warner, inspector-general. 

These officers constituted my staflE proper at the beginning of 
the campaign, which remained substantially the same till the 
close of the war, with very few exceptions ; viz. : Surgeon John 
Moore, United States Army, relieved Surgeon Kittoe of the vol- 
unteers (about Atlanta) as medical director; Major Henry 
Hitchcock joined as judge-advocate, and Captain G. Ward Nich- 
ols reported as an extra aide-de-camp (after the fall of Atlanta) 
at Glaylesville, just before we started for Savannah. 

During the whole month of April the preparations for active 
war were going on with extreme vigor, and my letter-book shows 
an active correspondence with Generals Grant, BWleck, Thomas, 
McPherson, and Schofleld on thousands of matters of detail and 
arrangement, most of which are embraced in my testimony before 
the Committee on the Conduct of the War, voL i.. Appendix. 

When the time for action approached, viz.. May 1, 186i, the 
actual armies prepared to move into Georgia resulted as foU 
lows, present for battle : 

Army of the Cumberland^ Major-General Thomas. 


Infantry 64,568 

ArtiUery 2,87T 

Cavalry 8,828. 

Aggregate 60,773^ 

Number of field-gnns, 130. 

Army of the Tennessee^ Major- General MoPhebson. 


Infantry. .' 22,437 

ArtiUery 1,404 

Cavalry 624 

Aggregate 24,46& 

Guns, 96. 


Army of the Ohio, Major- General Sohoftbld. 


Infantry 11,183 

ArtiUery 679 

Cavalry 1,697 

Aggregate 18,569 

Guns, 28. 

Grand aggregate, 98,797 men and 254 guns. 

These figures do not embrace the cavalry divisions which 
were still incomplete, viz., of General Stoneman, at Lexington, 
Kentucky, and of General Garrard, at Columbia, Tennessee, who 
were then rapidly collecting horses, and joined us in the early 
stage of the campaign. General Stoneman, having a division 
of about four tliousand men and horses, was attached to Scho- 
field's Army of the Ohio. General Garrard's division, of about 
four thousand five hundred men and horses, was attached to 
General Thomas's command ; and he had another irregular divi- 
sion of cavalry, commanded by Brigadier-General E. McOook. 
There was also a small brigade of cavalry, belonging to the 
Army of the Cumberland, attached temporarily to the Army of 
the Tennessee, which was commanded by Brigadier-General 
Judson KUpatrick. These cavalry commands changed constant- 
ly in strength and numbers, and were generally used on the ex- 
treme flanks, or for some special detached service, as will be 
hereinafter related. The Army of the Tennessee was still short 
by the two divisions detached with General Banks, up Red 
Eiver, and two other divisions on furlough in Illinois, Indiana, 
and Ohio, but which were rendezvousing at Cairo^ imder Gen- 
erals Leggett and Crocker, to form a part of the Seventeenth 
Corps, which corps was to be commanded by Major-General 
Frank P. Blair, then a member of Congress, in Washington. 
On the 2d of April I notified him by letter that I wanted him 
to join and to command these two divisions, which ought to be 
ready by the 1st of May. General Blair, with these two divi- 
sions, constituting the Seventeenth Army Corps, did not actually 
overtake us until \;^ reached Acworth and Big Shanty, in Geor 
gia, about the 9th of June, 1864:. 


In my letter of April 4th to Greneral John A. Eawlins, chief 
of staff to General Grant at Washington, I described at length 
all the preparations that were in progress for the active cam- 
paign thns contemplated, and therein estimated Schofield at 
twelve thousand, Thomas at forty-five thousand, and McPher- 
8on at thirty thousand. At first I intended to open the campaign 
about May 1st, by moving Schofield on Dalton from Cleveland, 
Thomas on the same objective from Chattanooga, and McPher- 
Bon on Homo and Kingston from Gunter's Landing. My inten- 
tion was merely to threaten Dalton in front, and to direct Mc- 
Pherson to act vigorously against the railroad below Eesaca, 
far to the rear of the enemy. But by reason of his being 
short of his estimated strength by the four divisions before 
referred to, and thus being reduced to about twenty-four thou- 
sand men, I did not feel justified in placing him so far away 
from the support of the main body of the army, and therefore 
subsequently changed the plan of campaign, so far as to bring 
that army up to Chattanooga, and to direct it thence through 
Ship's Gttp against the railroad to Johnston's rear, at or near 
Hesaca, distant from Dalton only eighteen miles, and in full 
communication with the other armies by roads behind Kocky- 

^^-sfa^JElidge, of about the same length. 

llj ^^^ *^® 10^^ ^f April I received General Grant's letter of 
April 4th from Washington, which formed the basis of all the 
campaigns of the year 186^1:, and subsequently received another 
of April 19th, written from Culpepper, Virginia, both of which 
are now in mv possession, in his own handwriting, and are here 
given entireTj These letters embrace substantially all the orders 
he ever made on this particular subject, and these, it will be 
seen, devolved on me the details both as to the plan and ex- 
ecution of the campaign by the armies under my immediate 

ftnTniTiMidTj Th^ftfl armiftfl wnrn to hft fllrftntftd against Jhe^rcbel 

army commanded by General Joseph E. Johnston, then lying 
on the defensive, strongly intrenched at Dalton, Georgia ; and I 
was required to follow it up closely and persistently, so that in 
no event could any part be detached to assist General Lee in 
Viiginia ; General Grant undertaking in like manner to keep 


Lee BO bu^^hat lie could not respond to any calls of help by 
Johnston. [Neither Atlanta, nor Angusta, nor Savannah, was 
the objective, but the "army of Jos. Johnston," go where it 



Headquabtebs ARioEa of the United States, ) 
Washinoton, D. C, April 4, 1864. ) 

Major- General W. T. Shebmax, commanding Military Division of the J/iw- 

Genebal : It is my design, if the enemy keep qniet and allow me to 
take the initiative in the spring campaign, to work all parts of the annj 
together, and somewhat toward a common centre. For yonr information' 
I now write you my programme, as at present determined upon. 

I have sent orders to Banks, by private messenger, to finish np his pres- 
ent expedition against Shreveport with all dispatch ; to turn over the de- 
fense of Kcd Kiver to General Steele and the navy, and to return yonr 
troops to you, and his own to New Orleans ; to abandon all of Texas, ex- 
cept the Kio Grande, and to hold that with not to exceed four thousand 
men ; to reduce the number of troops on the Mississippi to the lowest num- 
ber necessary to hold it, and to collect from his command not less than 
twenty-five thousand men. To this I will add five thousand from MissourL 
With this force he is to commence operations against Mobile as soon as he 
can. It will be impossible for him to commence too early. 

Gillmoro joins Butler with ten thousand men, and the two operate against 
Richmond from the south side of James River. This will give Butler thirty- 
three thousand men to operate with, W. F. Smith commanding the rigBt 
wing of his forces, and Gillmore the left wing. I will stay with the Army 
of the Potomac, increased by Bumside^s corps of not less than twenty-five 
thousand efiective men, and operate directly against Lee^s army, wherever 
it may be found. 

Sigel collects all his available force in two columns, one, under Ord and 
Averill, to start from Beverly, Virginia, and the other, under Crook, to start 
from Charleston, on the Kanawha, to move against the Yirginia & Tennes* 
see Railroad. 

Crook will have all cavalry, and will endeavor to get in about Saltville, 
and move east from there to join Ord. His force will be all cavalry, while 
Ord will have from ten to twelve thousand men of all arms. 
'^ C^ou I propose to move against Johnston^s army, to break it up, and to 

jV*^**^ get into the interior of the enemy's country as far as you can, inflicting all 
'^' th^damage you can against their war resourcesjyr^ 

^ Lido not propose to lay down for you a plan of^ampaign, but simply to 

lay down the work it is desirable to have done, and leave you free to eze- 


cate it in jonr own wayj Submit to mo, however, as early as jou can, jonr 
plan of operations. 

As stated. Banks is ordered to commence operations as soon as he can. 
Gillmore is ordered to report at Fortress Monroe by the 18th inst,' or as 
soon thereafter as practicable. Sigel is concentrating now. None will 
move firom their places of rendezvous until I direct, except Banks. I want 
to be ready to move by the 25th inst., if possible ; bnt all I can now direct 
is that yon get ready as soon as possible. I know yon will have difficulties 
to encounter in getting through the mountains to where supplies are abun- 
dant, bnt I believe you will accomplish it. 

From the expedition from the Department of West Virginia I do not 
calculate on very great results ; but it is the only way I can take troops 
from there. With the long line of railroad Sigel has to protect, he can 
spare no troops, except to move directly to his front. In this way he must 
get through to inflict great damage on the enemy, or the enemy must detach 
from one of his armies a large force to prevent it. In other words, if Sigel 
can't ridn himself, he can hold a leg while some one else skins. 

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

U. S. Grant, Lieutenant- General. 

IIeadquabtxbb Milttaby Division of the Mibsissipfi, ) 
NAflHVXLLX, Tennssssb, AjpHl 10, 18G4. ) 

Zieuteiumt' General U. S. Gbant, Commander-in-Ghi^y Washington^ D, G. 

DxiJi GsiTEBix: Your two letters of April 4th are now before me, and 
afford me infinite satisfaction. That we are now all to act on a common 
plan, converging on a common centre, looks like enlightened war. 

lake yourself, you take the biggest load, and from me you shall have 
thorough and hearty cooperation. I will not let side issues draw me off 
from your main plans in which I am to knock Jos. Johnston, and to do as 
much damage to the resources of the enemy as possible. I have heretofore 
written to General Bawlins and to Colonel Gomstock (of your staff) some- 
what of the method in which I propose to act I have seen all my army, 
corps, and division commanders, and have signified only to the former, viz., 
Schofield, Thomas, and McPherson, our general plans, which I inferred 
it^m. the purport of our conversation here and at Cincinnati. 

First, I am pushing stores to the front with all possible dispatch, and 
am completing the army organization according to the orders from Wash- 
ington, which are ample and perfectly satisfactory. 

It will take ns all of April to get in our furlough ed veterans, to bring up 
A. J. Smithes command, and to collect provisions and cattle on the lino of 
the Tennessee. Each of the armies will gaard, by detachments of its own, 
its reac communications. 

At the signal to be given by you, Schofield, leaving a select garrison at 


EnoxyiUe and London, with twelve thonsand men will drop down to the 
Hiawassee, and march against Johnston^s right by the old Federal road. 
Stoneman, now in Zentncky, organizing the cavalrj forces of the Army 
of the Ohio, will operate with Schofield on his left front— it may be, push- 
ing a select body of about two thousand cavalry by Ducktown or £l\jah 
toward Athens, Georgia. 

Thomas will aim to have forty-five thousand men of all arms, and move 
straight against Johnston, wherever he may be, fighting him cautiously, per- 
sistently, and to the best advantage. He will have two divisions of cavalry, 
to take advantage of any offering. 

MoPherson will have nine divisions of the Army of the Tennessee, if A. 
J. Smith gets here, in which case he will have full thirty thousand of the best 
men in America. He will cross the Tennessee at Decatur and Whitesbnrg, 
march toward Rome, and feel for Thomas. If Johnston falls behind the 
Ooosa, then McPherson will push for Rome ; and if Johnston falls behind 
the Chattahoochee, as I believe he will, then McPherson will cross over and 
join Thomas. 

McPherson has no cavalry, but I have taken one of Thomiis's divi- 
sions, viz., Garrard'sj six thousand strong, which is now at Columbia, 
mounting, equipping, and preparing. I design this division to operate on 
McPherson^s right, rear, or front, according as the enemy appears. But 
the moment I detect Johnston falling behind the Chattahoochee, I propose 
to cast off the effective part of this cavalry division, after crossing the 
Coosa, straight for Opelika, West Point, Columbus, or Wetumpka, to break 
up the road between Montgomery and Georgia. If Gkrrard can do this 
work well, he can return to the Union army ; but should a superior force 
interpose, then he will seek safety at Pensacola and join Banks, or, after 
rest, will act against any force that he can find east of Mobile, till such time 
as he can reach me. 

Should Johnston fall behind the Chattahoochee, I will feign to the 
right, but pass to the left and act against Atlanta or its eastern communica- 
tions, according to developed facts. 

This is about as far ahead as I feel disposed to look, but I will ever 
bear in mind that Johnston is at all times to be kept so busy that he cannot 
in any event send any part of his command against you or Banks. 

If Banks can at the same time carry Mobile and open up the Alabama 
River, he will in a measure solve the most difficult part of my problem, 
viz., *' provisions.^' But in that I must venture. Georgia has a million of 
inhabitants. If they can live, we should not starve. If the enemy inter- 
rupt our commxmications, I will be absolved from all obligations to subsist 
on our own resources, and will feel perfectly justified in taking whatever 
and wherever we can find. 

I will inspire my command, if successful, with the feeling that beef and 


ult ire an that is absolutely necessary to life, and that parched com once 
fed General Jackson's army on that very ground. 
As ever, your friend and servant, 

W. T. Shebman, Major- General. 


CuLFSPPKB CouBT-IiouBE, YmGiNiA, AprU 19, 1864. ) 

Me^or^General TT. T. Shebman, commanding Military IHvision of the 

GxNERAL : Since my letter to you of April 4th I have seen no reason to 
change any portion of the general plan of campaign, if the enemy remain 
still and allow us to take the initiative. Rain has continued so uninterrupt- 
edly until the last day or two that it will be impossible to move, however, 
before the 27th, even if no more should fall in the mean time. I think Sat- 
urday, the 80th, will probably be the day for our general move. 

Oolonel Oomstock, who will take this, can spend a day with you, and fill 
up many little gaps of information not given in any of my letters. 

What I now want more particularly to say is, that if the two main 
attacks, yours and the one from here, should promise great success, the 
enemy may, in a fit of desperation, abandon one part of their line of defense, 
and throw their whole strength upon the other, believing a single defeat 
withont any victory to sustain them better than a defeat all along their 
linei and hopmg too, at the same time, that the army, meeting with no re- 
sLstanoe, will rest perfectly satisfied with their laurels, having penetrated 
to a given point south, thereby enabling them to throw their force first 
upon one and then on the other. 

With the minority of military commanders they might do this. 

But you have had too much experience in traveling light, and subsisting 
npon the country, to be caught by any such ruse. I hope my experience 
has not been thrown away. My directions, then, would be, if the enemy in 
your front show rigns of joining Lee, follow him up to the full extent of 
your ability. I will prevent the concentration of Lee upon your front, if it 
ia in the power of this army to do it. 

The Army of the Potomac looks well, and, so far as I can judge, ofilccrs 

and men feel welL Yours truly, 

U. S. Gbant, Lieutenant- General, 

Headquabters Milttaby Division of the Mississippi, ) 
Nabhville, Tenkessee, AprU 24, 1664. ) 

Lieutenant- General Gbakt, commanding Armies of the United States, 
(Mpepper^ Virginia, 
General : I now have, at the hands of Colonel Oomstock, of your staff, 
the letter of April 19th, and am as far prepared to assume the offensive as 

so ATLANTA (fAMFAlGS. [1861. 

possible. I only tak m macb tima m j(m tliink proper, to enable me to get 
Qp McPberson'i two dWinonf from Cairo. Tbeir fnrlougbs will expire 
About tbis time, and some of tbem sbonld now be in motion for Clifton, 
wbenee the/ will rnaroh to Decatur, to Join General Dodge. 

Mcpherson is ordered to assemble the Fifteentb Corps near Larking 
and to get the Siiteentb and Serenteenth Corps (Dodge and Bliur) at 
Decatur at the earliest possible moment. From these two points be will 
direct his forces on Lebanon, Bammervllle, and Lafayette, wbere be will act 
against Johnston, if be accept battle at Dalton ; or move in the direction of 
Homef if tlie enemjr gire np Dalton, and fall behind the Oostenaola or 
Etowah. 1 see tiiat there is some risk in dividing our forces, but Thomas 
and Bciiofleld will have strength enough to cover all the valleys as far aa 
Dalton ; and, should .Johnston turn hts whole force against McPberson, tbe 
latter will have bis bridge at Larking and the route to Chattanooga tia 
Wills^s Valley and the Chattanooga Creek, open for retreat; and if Johnston 
attempt to leave Dalton, Thomas will have force enough to push on throngb 
Dalton to Kingston, which will checkmate binu My own opinion is that 
Johnston will be compelled to hang to his railroad, tbe only posnble avenne 
of supply to his army, estimated at finom forty-five to sixty thousand men. 

At Lafayette all our armies will be together, and if Jobnston stands at 
Dalton we must attack him in position. Thomas feela certain tliat be baa 
no material increase of force, and that be bat not sent awi^ Hardee, or any 
part of his army. Supplies are the great qnesUon. I have materially 
increased the number of oars daily. XThen I got bore, tbe average was 
from sixty-five to eighty per day. Yesterday tbe report was one bundled 
and ninety-three ; to-day, one bundred and thirty-four; and my estimate is 
that one hnndred and forty-five cars per day will give us a day's supply and 
a day*s aocnmnlation. 

McPberson is ortlered to carry in wagons twenty day's rations, and to 
rely on the depot at Ringgold for tbe renewal of bis bread. Beeves are 
now beins: driven on tbe hoof to tbe front ; and tbe commissaiy, Colonel 
Beckwith, f?eems folly alive to tbe importance of the whole matter. 

Our weakest point will be fW>m the direction of Decatur, and I wtH be 
fbrced to ri^k something from that quarter, depending on tbe fact that tbe 
enemy has no force available witb which t^ threaten our communications 
from that direction. 

Oolv>nol Oom?took will explain to you personally much that I cannot 
wmmit to papi*r. I am, witb great respect, 

W. T. SiiERVAS, M^tjor- General, 

On the *2^!h of April I romovod my hefidqnarti^rs to Chat- 
tnnooiTi, nnd prepHrod for taking the field in person. General 


Oiant had first indicated the 30th of April as the day for the 
mmultaneouB advance, bnt eubsequentlj changed the day to May 
6th. McPherson'fl troops were brought forward rapidly to 
Chattanooga, partly by rail and partly by marching. Thomas's 
troops were already in position (his advance being out as 
far as Kinggold — eighteen miles), and Schofield was marching 
down by Cleveland to Bed Clay and Catoosa Springs. On the 
4:th of May, Thomas was in person at Binggold, his left at Ca- 
toosa^ and his right at Leet's Tan-yard. Schofield was at Eed 
Clay, closing upon Thomas's left ; and McPherson was moving 
rapidly into Chattanooga, and ont toward Gordon's Mill. 

On the 5ih I rode out to Einggold, and on the very day ap- 
pointed by General Grant from his headquarters in Virginia the 
great campaign was begun* To give all the minute details will 
involve more than is contemplated, and I wUl endeavor only to 
trace the principal events, or rather to record such as weighed 
heaviest on my own mind at the time, and which now remain 
best fixed in my memory. 

My general headqu^ers ai^d official records remained back 
at Kadiville, and I had near me only my personal staff and in- 
spectors-general, with about half a dozen wagons, and a single 
company of Ohio sharp-shooters (commanded by Deutenant 
McCrory) as headquarters or camp guard. I also had a small 
company of irregular Alabama cavalry (commanded by Lieu- 
tenant Snelling), used mostly as orderlies and couriers. Ko 
wall-tents were allowed, only the flies. Our mess establishment 
was less in bulk than that of any of the brigade commanders ; 
nor was this from an indifference to the ordinary comforts of 
life, but because I wanted to set the example, and gradually to 
convert all parts of that army into a mobile machine, willing 
and able to start at a minute's notice, and to subsist on the 
scantiest food* To reap absolute success might involve the 
necessity even of dropping all wagons, and to subsist on the 
chance food which the country was known to contain. I had 
obtained not only the United States census-tables of 1860, but 
a compilation made by the Controller of the State of Georgia 
for tho pnipose of taxation, containing in considerable detail 


the "population and statistics" of every county in Georgia. 
One of my aides (Captain Dayton) acted as assistant adjutant- 
general, with an order-book, letter-book, and writing-paper, that 
filled a small chest not much larger than an ordinary candle-box. 
The only reports and returns called for were the ordinary tri- 
monthly returns of " eflEective strength.'' As these accumulated 
they were sent back to Nashville, and afterward were embraced 
in the archives of the Military Division of the Mississippi, 
changed in 1865 to the Military Division of the Missouri, and I 
suppose they were burned in the Chicago fire of 18T0. Still, 
duplicates remain of all essential papers in the archives of the 
War Department. 

The 6th of May was given to Schofield and McPherson to 
get into position, and on the 7th General Thomas moved in 
force against Tunnel Hill, driving off a mere picket-guard of the 
enemy, and I was agreeably surprised to find that no damage had 
been done to the tunnel or the railroad. From Tunnel Hill I 
could look into the gorge by which the railroad passed through 
a straight and well-defined range of mountains, presenting sharp 
palisade faces, and known as "EockyFace." The gorge itself 
was called the "Buzzard Eoost." "We could plainly see the 
enemy in this gorge and behind it, and Mill Creek which formed 
the gorge, fiowing toward Dalton, had been dammed up, making 
a sort of irregular lake, filling the road, thereby obstructing it, 
and the enemy's batteries crowned the cliffs on either side. The 
position was very strong, and I knew that such a general as was 
my antagonist (Jos. Johnston), who had been there six months, 
had fortified it to the maximum. Therefore I had no intention 
to attack the position seriously in front, but depended on Mc- 
Pherson to capture and hold the railroad to its rear, which 
would force Johnston to detach largely against him, or rather, as 
I expected, to evacuate his position at Dalton altogether. My 
orders to Generals Thomas and Schofield were merely to press 
strongly at all points in front, ready to rush in on the first ap- 
pearance of " let go," and, if possible, to catch our enemy in the 
confusion of retreat 

All the movements of the Yth and 8th were made exactly as 


ordered, and the enemy seemed quiescent, acting pm'ely on the 

I had constant communication with all parts of the army, and 
on the 9th McPherson's head of column entered and passed 
through Snake Creek, perfectly undefended, and accomplished a 
[X>mplete surprise to the enemy. At its farther debouche he 
met a cavalry brigade, easily driven, which retreated hastily 
Qorth toward Dalton, and doubtless carried to Johnston the first 
serious intimation that a heavy force of infantry and artillery 
was to his rear and within a few miles of his railroad. I got a 
ihort note from McPherson that day (written at 2 p. m., when 
be was within a mile and a half of the railroad, above and near 
Besaca), and we all felt jubilant. I renewed orders to Thomas 
ind Sdiofield to be ready for the instant pursuit of what I ex- 
pected to be a broken and disordered army, forced to retreat by 
roads to the east of Besaca, which were known to be very rough 
md impracticable. 

That night I received further notice from McPherson that 
[ie had found Besaca too strong for a surprise ; that in conse- 
quence he had fallen back three miles to the mouth of Snake- 
Oreek Gap, and was there fortified. I wrote him the next day 
the following letters, copies of which are in my letter-book ; but 
bis to me were mere notes in pencil, not retained : 


In thb Fold, Tunnsl Hill, Geoboia, May 11, 1864— Jbfbmi/i^. ) 

If^iff^r- (7MMrar MoPmsBSON, eommanding Army of the Tennesseej Sugar 
Valley, Oeargia, 

Gbnsbal: I received by conrier (in the night) yours of 5 and 6.80 p. m. 
of yesterday. 

You now have your twenty-three thousand men, and General Hooker is 
m dose support, so that you can hold aU of Jos. Johnston^s army in check 
should he abandon Dalton. He cannot afford to abandon Dalton, for he 
has fixed it up on purpose to receive us, and he observes that we are close 
at handy waiting for him to quit. He cannot afford a detachment strong 
enough to fight you, as his army will not admit of it. 

Strengthen your position ; fight any thing that comes ; and threaten the 
safety of the railroad all the time. Bat, to tell the truth, I would rather 
the enemy would stay in Dalton two more days, when he may find in his 




rear a larger party than he expects in an open field. At all erents, we can 
then choose our own ground, and he will be forced to move out of his works. 
I do not intend to put a column into Bozzard Boost-Gkip at present. 

See that yon are in easy commnnioation with me and with all head« 
quarters. After to-day the supplies will be at Binggold. Yours, 

W. T. Shbbman, Major- General eommandinff. 


In the Fuld, TumrsL Hill, Qsoboia, J£iy 11, 1864— JTmum^. ) 
General MoPhebsok, Suffor Valley, 

Genebal: The indications are that Johnston is evacuating Dalton. In 
that event,' Ho ward^s corps and the cavalry will pursue; all the rest will 
follow your route. I will be down early in the morning. 

Try to strike him if possible about the forks of the road. 

Hooker must be with you now, and you may send General Garrard by 

Bummerville to threaten Borne and that flank. I will cause all the lin^ to 

be felt at once. 

W. T. Shebmak, Majar-Generdl eommanding. 

McFherson had startled Jolinston in liis fancied secnritj^ but 
had not done the full measure of his work. He had in hand 
twenty-three thousand of the best men of the army, and could 
have walked into Besaca (then held only by a small brigade), 
or he could have placed his whole force astride the railroad 
above Kesaca, and there have easily withstood the attack of all 
of Johnston's army, with the knowledge that Thomas and Scho- 
field were on his heels. Had he done so, I am certain that 
Johnston would not have ventured to attack him in position, 
but would have retreated eastward by Spring Place, and we 
should have captured half his army and all his artillery and 
wagons at the vety beginning of the campaign. 

Such an opportunity does not occur twice in a single life, but 
at the critical moment McFherson seems to have been a little 
timid. Still, he was perfectly justified by his orders, and fell 
back and assumed an unassailable defensive position in Sugar 
Valley, on the Eesaca side of Snake-Creek Gap. As soon as 
informed of this, I determined to pass the whole army through 
Snake-Creek Qup, and to move on Eesaca with the main army. 

But during the 10th, the enemy showed no signs of evacu- 
ating Dalton, and I was waiting for the arrival of Garrard's and 



tonemaii's cavalry, known to be near at hand, eo as to secure 
'^e full advantages of victory, of which I felt certain. Hooker's 
'^W'entieth Corps was at once moved down to within easy sup- 
porting distance of McPherson; and on the 11th, perceiving 
^gns of evacuation of Dalton, I gave all the orders for the gen- 
^ movement, leaving the Fourth Corps (Howard) and Stone- 
tnan's cavalry in observation in front of Buzzard-Koost Gap, 
and directing all the rest of the army to march through Snake- 
Creek G^p, straight on Eesaca. The roads were only such as 
the country afforded, mere rough wagon-ways, and these con- 
rerged to the single narrow track through Snake-Creek Gap ; 
)ut during the 12th and 13th the bulk of Thomas's and Scho- 
ield'fl armies were got through, and deployed against Eesaca, 
fcPherson on the right, Thomas in the centre, and Schofield 
•n the left .Johnston, as I anticipated, had abandoned all 
lis well-prepared defenses at Dalton, and was found inside of 
iesaca with the bulk of his army, holding his divisions well 
a hand, acting purely on the defensive, and fighting well at 
U points of conflict. A complete line of intrenchments was 
ound covering the place, and this was strongly manned at all 
K>int8. On the 14th we closed in, enveloping the town on its 
lorth and west, and during the 15 th we had a day of continual 
lattle and skirmish. At the same time I caused two pontoon- 
ridges to be laid across the Oostenaula River at Lay's Ferry, 
bout three miles below the town, by which we could threaten 
/alhonn, a station on the railroad seven miles below Eesaca. 
Lt the same time, May 14th, I dispatched General Garrard, 
dth his cavalry division, down the Oostenaula by the Eome 
oad, with orders to cross over, if possible, and to attack or 
breaten the railroad at rfny point below Calhoun and above 

During the 15th, without attempting to assault the fortified 
rorks, we pressed at all points, and the sound of cannon and 
lusketry rose all day to the dignity of a battle. Toward even- 
ig McJPherson moved his whole line of battle forward, till 
e had gained a ridge overlooking the town, from which his 
eld-artillery could reach the railroad-bKdge across the Ooste- 


naula. The enemy made several attempts to drive him awa^, 
repeating the sallies several times, and extending them into the 
night ; but in every instance he was repulsed with bloody loss. 

Hooker's corps had also some heavy and handsome fighting 
that afternoon and night on the left, where the Dajton road 
entered the intrenchments, capturing a four-gun intrenched 
battery, with its men and guns; and generally all our men 
showed the finest fighting qualities. 

Howard's corps had followed Johnston down from Dalton, 
and was in line ; Stoneman's division of cavahy had also got 
up, and was on the extreme left, beyond the Oostenaula. 

On the night of May 15th Johnston got his army across 
the bridges, set them on fire, and we entered Besaca at day- 
light. Our loss up to that time was about six hundred dead 
and thirty-three hundred and seventy-five wounded^^moetiy 
light wounds that did not necessitate sending the men to the 
rear for treatment. That Johnston had deliberately designed 
in advance to give up such strong positions as Dalton and Be- 
saca, for the purpose of drawing us farther south, is simply 
absurd. Had he remained in Dalton another hour, it would 
have been his total defeat, and he only evacuated. Besaca be- 
cause his safety demanded it. The movement by us through 
Snake-Creek Gap was a total surprise to him. My army about 
doubled his in size, but he had all the advantages of natural 
positions, of artificial forts and roads, and of concentrated action. 
We were compelled to grope our way through forests, across 
mountains, with a large army, necessarily more or less dispersed. 
Of course, I was disappointed not to have crippled his army 
more at that particular stage of the game ; but, as it resulted, 
these rapid successes gave us the initiative, and the usual im- 
pulse of a conquering army. 

Johnston having retreated in the night of May 15th, imme- 
diate pursuit was begun. A division of infantry (Jeff. 0. Davis's) 
was at once dispatched down the valley toward Home, to sup- 
port Garrard's cavalry, and the whole army was ordered, to 
pursue, McPherson by Lay's Ferry, on the right, Thomas di- 
rectly by the railroad, and Schofield by the left, by the old 

1864.] . ATLANTA CAMPAIGN. 37 

road that crossed the Oostenaula above Echota or Newtown. 
We hastily repaired the railroad-bridge at Eesaca^ which had 
been partially burned, and built a temporary floating-bridge out 
of timber and materials found on the spot ; so that Thomas got 
his advance corps over during the 16th, and marched as far 
as Calhoun, where he came into communication with McPher- 
son's troops, which had crossed the Oostenaula at Lay's Ferry 
by our pontoon-bridges, previously laid. Inasmuch as the 
bridge at Besaca was overtaxed, Hooker's Twentieth Corps 
was also diverted to cross by the fords and ferries above Kesaca, 
in the neighborhood of Echota. 

On the 17th, toward evening, the head of Thomas's column, 
Newton's division, encountered the rear-guard of Johnston's 
army near Adairsville. I was near the head of column at the 
time, trying to get a view of the position of the enemy from 
an elevation in an open field. My party attracted the fire of a 
battery; a shell passed throagh the group of staS-officers and 
burst just beyond, which scattered us promptly. The next 
morning the enemy had disappeared, and our pursuit was con- 
turned to Kingston, which we reached during Simday forenoon, 

From Kesaca the railroad runs nearly due south, but at 
Kingston it makes junction with another railroad from Kome, 
and changes direction due east. At that time McPherson's head 
of column was about four miles to the west of Kingston, at a 
country place called " Woodlawn ; " Schofield and Hooker were 
on the direct roads leading from Newtown to Cassvillo, diagonal 
to the route followed by Thomas. Thomas's head of column, 
which had followed the country roads alongside of the railroad, 
was about four miles east of Kingston, toward Cas8\T[lle, when 
about noon I got a message from him that he had found the 
enemy, drawn up in line of battle, on some extensive, open 
ground, about half-way between Kingston and Cassville, and 
that appearances indicated a willingness and preparation for 

Hurriedly sending orders to McPherson to resume the march, 
to hasten forward by roads leading to the south of Kingston, 


j!o a.^ to leave for Thomaa's troops and trains the use of the main 
road, and to come np on his right, I rode forward rapidly, OTer 
aorne roti^h gravel hills, and abont six miles from Slingston 
foaud General Thomas, with his troops deployed; bnt he re- 
l>ffrted tliat the enemy had fallen hack in echelon of divisionfi^ 
itea/Iily and in superb order, into Cafisville. • I knew that the 
roads hy wliieh Generals Hooker and Schofield were approach- 
ing won Id lead them to a seminaiy near Cassville, and that it 
was all'irnj>ortant to secure the point of junction of these roads 
witli the main road along which we were marching. Therefore 
I ordered General Thomas to push forward his deployed lines as 
rapidly as jHjmhle ; and, as night was approaching, I ordered 
two field'l^atteries to close up at a gallop on some woods which 
lay Ixftween us and the town of Cassville. TVe could not see 
the t<;wn hy reason of these woods, but a high range of hiQs 
just ba(rk of the town was visible over the tree-tops. On these 
hills couhl be seen fresh-made parapets, and the movements of 
men, against whom I directed the artillery to fire at long range. 
The stout resistance made by the enemy along our whole front of 
a cotiple of miles indicated a purpose to fight at Cassville; and, 
as tlio niglit was closing in, General Thomas and I were together, 
along with our skirmish-lines near the seminary, on the edge of 
the town, where musket-bullets from the enemy were cutting the 
leavoH of the trees pretty thickly about us. Either Thomas or I 
r(Mnar]((Ml tliat that was not the place for the two senior ofiicers of 
a great army, and wo personally went back to the battery, where 
wo i)aHH(Ml tlio night on tlio ground. During the night I had 
reporlrt from McPhcrson, Hooker, and Schofield. The former 
was ahout five miles to my right rear, near the "nitre-caves;" 
Schoflold was about six miles north, and Hooker between us, 
within two miles. All were ordered to close down on Cass- 
ville at daylight, and to attack the enemy wherever found. 
Bkirmirthing was kept up all night, but when day broke the next 
morning, May 2()th, the enemy was gone, and our cavalry was 
Hont in i>ursuit. These reported him beyond the Etowah Eiver. 
Wo wore then well in advance of our railroad-trains, on which 
wo doiH^tuled for supplies ; so I determined to pause a few days 


to repair the railroad, whicli had been damaged but little, except 
at the bridge at Eesaca, and then to go on. 

Nearly aU the people of the country seemed to have fled 
with Johnston's army; yet some few families remained, and 
from one of them I procured the copy of an order which John- 
ston had made at Adairsville, in which he recited tliat he had 
retreated as far as strategy required, and that his army must be 
prepared for battle at Oassville. The newspapers of the South, 
many of which we found, were also loud in denunciation of 
Johnston's falling back before us without a serious battle, simply 
resisting by his skirmish-lines and by his rear-guard. But hig 
friends proclaimed that it was all strategic; that he was delib- 
erately drawing us farther and farther into the meshes, farther and 
farther away from our base of supplies, and that in due season he 
would not only halt for battle, but assume the bold offensive. 
Of course it was to my interest to bring him to battle as soon as 
possible, when our numerical superiority was at the greatest ; for 
he was picking up his detachments as he fell back, whereas I 
was compelled to make similar and stronger detachments to 
repair the railroads as we advanced, and to guard them. I found 
at Casflville many evidences of preparation for a grand battle, 
among them a long line of fresh intrenchments on the hill be- 
yond the town, extending nearly three miles to the south, em- 
bracing the railroad-crossing. I was also convinced that the 
whole of Polk's corps had joined Johnston from Mississippi, 
and that he had in hand three full corps, viz.. Hood's, Polk's, 
and Hardee's, numbering about sixty thousand men, and could 
not then imagine why he had declined battle, and did not learn 
the real reason till after the war was over, and then from Gen- 
eral Johnston himseK. 

In the autumn of 1865, when in command of the Milita- 
ry Division of the Missouri, I went from St. Louis to Little 
Bock, Arkansas, and afterward to Memphis. Taking a steamer 
for Cairo, I found as fellow-passengers Generals Johnston and 
Frank Blair. "We were, of course, on the most friendly terms, 
and on our way up we talked over our battles again, played 
cards, and questioned each other as to particular parts of our 


mutual conduct in the game of war. I told Johnston that I 
had seen his order of preparation, in the nature of an address 
to his army, announcing his purpose to retreat no more, but to 
accept batde at Cassville. He answered that such was his pur- 
pose ; that he had left Hardee's corps in the open fields to check 
Thomas, and gain time for his formation on the ridge, just be- 
hind Cassville; and it was this corps which Greneral Thomas 
had seen deployed, and whose handsome movement in retreat 
he had reported in such complimentary terms, Johnston de- 
scribed how he had placed Hood's corps on the right, Polk's 
in the centre, and Hardee's on the left. He said he had 
ridden over the groimd, given to each corps commander his posi- 
tion, and orders to throw up parapets during the night ; that he 
was with Hardee on his extreme left as the night closed in, and 
as Hardee's troops fell back to the position assigned them for the 
intended battle of the next day ; and that, after giving Hardee 
some general instructions, he and his stafE rode back to Cassville. 
As he entered the town, or village, he met Generals Hood and 
Polk. Hood inquired of liim if he had had any thing to eat, 
and he said no, that he was both hungry and tired, when Hood 
invited him to go and share a supper which had been prepared 
for him at a house close by. At the supper they discussed the 
chances of the impending battle, when Hood spoke of the ground 
assigned him as being enfiladed by our (Union) artillery, which 
Johnston disputed, when General Polk chimed in with the re- 
mark that General Hood was right ; that the cannonHshots fired 
by us at nightfall had enfiladed their general line of battle, and 
that for this reason he feared they could not hold their men. 
General Johnston was surprised at this, for he understood Gen- 
eral Hood to be one of those who professed to criticise his strat- 
egy, contending that, instead of retreating, he should have risked 
a battle. General Johnston said he was provoked, accused them 
of having been in conference, with being beaten before battle, 
and added tliat he was unwilling to engage in a critical battle 
with an army so superior to his own in numbers, with two of 
his three corps commanders dissatisfied with the ground and 
positions assigned them. He then and there made up his mind 


to retreat still farther south, to put the Etowah Kivei and the 
Allatoona range between us ; and he at once gave orders to re- 
sume the retrograde movement. 

This was my recollection of the substance of the conversa- 
tion, of which I made no note at the time ; but, at a meeting of 
the Society of the Army of the Cumberland some years after, at 
Cleveland, Ohio, about 1868, in a short after-dinner speech, I 
related this conversation, and it got into print. Subsequently, 
in the spring of 1870, when I was at New Orleans, en route ioi 
Texas, General Hood called to see me at the St. Charles Hotel, 
explained that he had seen my speech reprinted in the news- 
papers and gave me his version of the same event, describ- 
ing the halt at Cassville, the general orders for battle on tliat 
ground, and the meeting at supper with Generals Johnston 
and Polk, when the chances of the battle to be fought tlie next 
day were freely and fully discussed ; and he stated that he had 
argued against fighting the battle purely on the defensive, but 
had asked General Johnston to })ermit him with his own 
oorpe and part of Folk's to quit their lines, and to march rapidly 
to attack and overwhelm Schofield, who was known to be sepa- 
rated from Thomas by an interval of nearly five miles, claiming 
that he could have defeated Schofield, and got back to his posi- 
tion in time to meet General Thomas's attack in front. He also 
stated that he had then contended with Johnston for the ^' offen- 
give-defensive " game, instead of the " pure defensive," as pro- 
posed by General Jolmston ; and he said that it was at this 
time that General Johnston had taken offense, and that it was 
Ibr this reason he had ordered the retreat that night. As sub- 
sequent events estranged these two officers, it is very natm*al 
they should now differ on this point ; but it was sufficient for us 
that the rebel army did retreat that night, leaving us masters 
of all the country above the Etowah Eiver. 

For the purposes of rest, to give time for the repair of 
the railroads, and to replenish supplies, we Lay by some few 
days in that quarter — Schofield with Stoneman's cavalry hold- 
ing the ground at Cassville Depot, Cartersville, and the Etowah 
Bridge; Thomas holding his ground near Cassville, and Mc- 

42 ATLANTA O^VMPAIGli. [1864. 

Phereon that near Kingston. The officer intrusted with the 
repair of the raikoads was Colonel W, W. Wright, a railroad- 
engineer, who, with about two thousand men, was so industrious 
and skillful that the bridge at Eesaca was rebuilt in three days, 
and cars loaded with stores came forward to Kingston on die 
21th. The telegraph also brought us the news of the bloody 
and desperate battles of the Wilderness, in Virginia, and that 
Generel Grant was pushing his operations against Lee with ter- 
rific energy. I was therefore resolved to give my enemy no 

In early days (1844), when a lieutenant of the Third Artil- 
lery, I had been sent from Charleston, South Carolina, to Ma- 
rietta, Georgia, to assist InspectoivGteneral Churchill to take tes- 
timony concerning certain losses of horses and accoutrements 
by the Georgia Volunteers during the Florida War ; and after 
completing the work at Marietta we transferred our party over 
to Bellefonte, Alabama. I had ridden the distance on horse- 
back, and had noted well the topography of the country, es- 
pecially that about Kenesaw, Allatoona, and the Etowah River. 
On that occasion I had stopped some days with a Colonel Tum- 
lin, to see some remarkable Indian mounds on the Etowah 
liiver, usually called the " Hightower." I therefore knew that 
the AUatoona Pass was very strong, would be hard to force, and 
resolved not even to attempt it, but to turn the position, by 
moving from Kingston to Marietta via Dallas ; accordingly I 
made orders on the 20th to get ready for the march to begin on 
the 23d. The Army of the Cumberland was ordered to march 
for Dallas, by Euharlee and Stilesboro' ; Davis's division, then 
in Eome, by Van Wert ; the Army of the Ohio to keep on the 
left of Thomas, by a place called Burnt Hickory; and the 
Army of the Tennessee to march for a position a little to the 
south, so as to bo on the right of the general army, when 
grouped about Dallas. 

The movement contemplated leaving our railroad, and to de- 
pend for twenty days on the contents of our wagons ; and as 
the country was very obscure, mostly in a state of nature, dense- 
ly wooded, and with few roads, our movements were necessarilv 

1864.] ATLAin-A CA3k£PAIGN. 43 

slow. TVe crossed the Etowah by several bridges and fords, 
and took as many roads as possible, keeping up communication 
by cross-roads, or by couriers through the woods. I personally 
joined General Thomas, who had the centre, and was conse- 
quently the main column, or " column of direction." The several 
columns followed generally the valley of the Euharlee, a tribu- 
tary coming into the Etowah from the south, and gradually 
crofii^ over a ridge of mountains, parts of which had once been 
worked over for gold, and were consequently full of paths and 
mrnsed wagon-roads or tracks. A cavalry picket of the enemy 
at Eumt Hickory was captured, and had on his person an or- 
der from Greneral Johnston, dated at Allatoona, which showed 
that he had detected my purpose of turning his position, and 
it accordingly became necessary to use great caution, lest some 
of the minor columns should fall into ambush, but, luckily the 
enemy was not much more familiar with that part of the coun- 
try than we wereJ On the other side of the Allatoona range, 
the Pumpkin-Vine Creek, also a tributary of the Etowah, flowed 
north and west; Dallas, the point aimed at, was a small town 
on the other or east side of this creek, and was the point of 
concentration of a great many roads that led in every direc- 
tion. Its possession would be a threat to Marietta and At- 
lanta, but I could not then venture to attempt either, till I 
had regained the use of the railroad, at least as far down as its 
dSlxmche from the Allatoona range of mountains. Therefore, 
the movement was chiefly designed to compel Johnston to give 
up Allatoona. 

On the 25th all the columns were moving steadily on Dallas 
— McPherson and Davis away off to the right, near Van Wert ; 
Thomas on the main road in the centre, with Hooker's Twen- 
tieth Corps ahead, toward Dallas ; and Schofield to the left rear. 
For the convenience of march. Hooker had his three divisions 
on separate roads, all leading toward Dallas, when, in the after- 
noon, as he approached a bridge across Pumpkin- Vine Creek, 
he found it held by a cavalry force, which was driven off, 
but the bridge was on flre. This fire was extinguished, and 
Hooker's leading division (Gteary's) followed the retreating 


cavalry on a road leading due east toward Marietta, instead 
of Dallas. This leading division, about four miles out from 
the bridge, struck a heavy infantry force, which was mov- 
ing down from Allatoona toward Dallas, and a sharp battle en- 
sued. I came up in person soon after, and as my map showed 
tliat we were near an important cross-road called " New Hope," 
from a Methodist meeting-house there of that name, I ordered 
General Hooker to secure it if possible that night. He tisked 
for a short delay, till he could bring up his other two divisions, 
viz., of Butterfield and Williams, but before these divisions 
had got up and were deployed, the enemy had also gained corre- 
sponding strength. The woods were so dense, and the resist- 
ance so spirited, that Hooker could not carry the position, 
though the battle was noisy, and prolonged far into the night 
This point, " New Hope," was the accidental intersection of the 
road leading from Allatoona to Dallas with tliat from Van 
Wert to Marietta, was four miles northeast of Dallas, and from 
the bloody fighting there for the next week was called by the 
soldiers " Hell-Hole." 

The night was pitch-dark, it rained hard, and the conver- 
gence of our columns toward Dallas produced much confu- 
sion. I am sure similar confusion existed in the army op- 
posed to us, for we were all mixed up. I slept on the ground, 
without cover, alongside of a log, got little sleep, resolved at 
daylight to renew the battle, and to make a lodgment on the 
Dallas and Allatoona road if possible, but the morning revealed 
a strong line of intrenchments facing us, with a heavy force of 
infantry and guns. The battle was renewed, and without suc- 
cess. McPherson reached Dallas that morning, viz., the 26th, 
and deployed his troops to the southeast and east of the town, 
placing Davis's division of the Fourteenth Corps, which had 
joined him on the road from Rome, on his left ; but this still 
left a gap of at least three miles between Davis and Hooker. 
Meantime, also. General Schofield was closing up on Thomas's 

Satisfied that Johnston in person was at New Hope with 
all his army, and that it was so much nearer my " objective," 


the railroad, than Dallas, I concluded to draw McPlierson from 
Dallas to Hooker's right, and gave orders accordingly; but 
MicPherson also was confronted with a heavy force, and, as he 
b^an to withdraw according to his orders, on the morning of 
the 28th lie was fiercely assailed on his right ; a bloody battle 
ensued, in which he repulsed the attack, inflicting heavy loss 
on his assailants, and it was not until the 1st of Jime that 
he was enabled to withdraw from Dallas, and to effect a close 
junction with Hooker in front of New Hope. Meantime 
Thomas and Schofield were completing their deployments, 
gradually overlapping Johnston on his right, and thus extend- 
ing our left nearer and nearer to the raiboad, the nearest point 
of which was Acworth, about eight miles distant. All this time 
a continual battle was in progress by strong skirmish-lines, 
taking advantage of every species of cover, and both parties 
fortifying each night by rifle-trenches, with head-logs, many of 
which grew to be as formidable as first-class works of defense. 
Occasionally one party or the other would make a dash in the 
nature of a sally, but usually it sustained a repulse with great 
loss of life. I visited personally all parts of our lines nearly 
every day, was constantly within musket-range, and though the 
fire of musketry and cannon resounded day and night along 
the whole line, varying from six to ten miles, I rarely saw a 
dozen of the enemy at any one time ; and these were always 
akirmiahers dodgmg from tree to tree, or behind logs on the 
ground, or who occasionally showed their heads above the hastily- 
constructed but remarkably strong rifle-trenches. On the oc- 
casion of my visit to McPherson on the 30th of May, while 
standing with a group of officers, among whom were Generals 
McPherson, Logan, Barry, and Colonel Taylor, my former chief 
of artillery, a Mini6-ball passed through Logan's coat-sleeve, 
scratching the skin, and struck Colonel Taylor square in the 
breast ; luckily he had in his pocket a famous memorandum- 
book, in which he kept a sort of diary, about which we used 
to joke him a good deal ; its thickness and size saved his life, 
breaking the force of the ball, so .that after traversing the book 
it only penetrated the breast to the ribs, but it knocked him 


down and disabled him for the rest of the campaign. He was 
a most competent and worthy oflScer, and now lives in poverty 
in Cliicago, sustained in part by his own labor, and in part by a 
pitiful pension recently granted. 

On the 1st of June General McPherson closed in upon the 
right, and, without attempting further to cany the enemy's 
strong position at New Hope Church, I held our general right 
in close contact with it, gradually, carefully, and steadily work- 
ing by the left, until our strong infantry-lines had reached 
and secured possession of all the wagon-roads between New 
Hope, Allatoona, and Acworth, when I dispatched Grenerals GJar- 
rard's and Stoneman's divisions of cavalry into Allatoona, the 
first around by the west end of the pass, and the latter by the 
direct road. Both reached their destination without opposi- 
tion, and orders were at once given to repair the railroad forward 
from Kingston to Allatoona, embracing the bridge across the 
Etowah Eiver. Thus the real object of my move on Dallas was 
accomplished, and on the 4th of Jime I was preparing to draw 
off from New Hope Church, and to take position on the rail- 
road in front of Allatoona, when. General Johnston himself 
having evacuated his position, we effected the change without 
further battle, and moved to the railroad, occupying it from 
Allatoona and Acworth forward to Big Shanty, in sight of the 
famous Kenesaw Mountain. 

Thus, substantially in the month of May, we had steadily 
driven our antagonist from the strong positions of Dalton, Re- 
saca, Cassville, Allatoona, and Dallas ; had advanced our lines 
in strong, compact order from Chattanooga to Big Shanty, nearly 
a hundred miles of as diflScult country as was ever fought over 
by civilized armies ; and thus stood prepared to go on, anxious 
to fight, and confident of success as soon as the railroad commu- 
nications were complete to bring forward the necessary sup- 
plies. It is now impossible to state accurately our loss of life 
and men in any one separate battle ; for the fighting was con- 
tinuous, almost daily, among trees and bushes, on ground where 
one could rarely see a hundred yards ahead. 

The aggregate loss in the several corps for the month of May 




is reported as follows in the usual monthly returns sent to the 
AdjutantrGteneral's office, which are, therefore, official : 

Catualtiei during the Month of May ^ IS^ {Major- General Sherman com- 



Killed and lllttiiic. 



FoQI^h f HO'WMrQ) •«•••«•*•••*••«■■••*•. 






Yoorteenth (Filmer) 


TwntieUi CHM^cr) 








KIU«d and MUdag. 



FUtonth (Lnrm) 



(Not jet np.) 





MztMntt ?P<M^in»)-. 



KTVT \ /•••••••••••••••••••• 







Killed and Mladag. 



IVrntT-tiiM (8ehofAVi>. ,,....,...,,. 










Onml •ff|[iififlit6 




General Joseph E. Johnston, in his " Narrative of his Mili- 
tary Operations," just published (March 27, 1874), gives the 
effective strength of his army at and about Dalton on the 1st of 
May, 1864 ^age 302), as follows : 

Infantry 87,652 

Artillery 2,812 

Cavalry 2,892 

TotaL 42,856 




During May, and prior to reaching Oassville, he was farther 
reenforced (page 352) : 

Polk's corps of three divisions. 12,000 

Martin's division of cavalrj 8,600 

Jackson's division of cavalry 8,900 

And at New Hope Church, May 26th : 

Brigade of Qnarles. 2,200 

Grand total 64,456 

His losses during the month of May are stated by him, as 
taken from the report of Surgeon Foard (page 325) : 






Hard66*8. ..•....• • 
































Total killed and wounded during Maj.. 




These figures include only the killed and wounded, whereas 
my statement of losses embraces the " missing," which are usu- 
ally " prisoners," and of these we captured, during the whole cam- 
paign of four and a half months, exactly 12,983, whose names, 
rank, and regiments, were officially reported to the Commissary- 
General of Prisoners ; and assuming a due proportion for the 
month of May, viz., one-fourth, makes 3,245 to be added to the 
killed and wounded given above, making an aggregate loss in 


Johnston's army, from Dalton to New Hope, inclusive, of 8,638, 
against onrs of 9,299. 

Therefore General Johnston is greatly in error, in his esti- 
mates on page 357, in stating our loss, as compared with his, at 
six or ten to one. 

I always estimated my force at about double his, and could 
afford to lose two to one without disturbing our relative pro- 
portion ; but I also reckoned that, in the natural strength of the 
country, in the abundance of mountains, streams, and forests, 
he had a fair offset to our numerical superiority, and therefore 
endeavored to act with reasonable caution while moving on the 
vigorous " offensive." 

With the drawn battle of New Hope Church, and our occu- 
pation of the natural fortress of AUatoona, terminated the month 
of May, and the first stage of the campaign. 




JUNE, 1864. 

On the Ist of Juno our three armies were well in hand, in 
die broken and densely-wooded country fronting the enemy in- 
trenched at New Hope Church, about five miles north of Dal- 
las. General Stoneman's division of cavalry had occupied Alia- 
toona, on the railroad, and General Gtirrard's division was at the 
western end of the pass, about Stilesboro'. Colonel W. W. 
Wright, of the Engineers, was busily employed in repairing the 
railroad and rebuilding the bridge across the Etowah (or High- 
tower) Eiver, which had been destroyed by the enemy on his 
retreat ; and the armies were engaged in a general and constant 
skirmish along a front of about six miles — ^McPherson the right, 
Thomas the centre, and Schofield on the left. By gradually 
covering our front with parapet, and extending to the left, we 
approached the railroad toward Acworth and overlapped the 
enemy's right. By the 4th of June we had made such progress 
that Johnston evacuated his lines in the night, leaving ns mas- 
ters of the situation, when I deliberately shifted McPherson's 
army to the extreme left, at and in front of Acworth, with 
Thomas's about two miles on his right, and Schofield's on his 
right — ^all facing east. Heavy rains set in about the 1st of June, 
making the roads infamous ; but our marches were short, as wo 
needed time for the repair of the railroad, so as to bring sup- 
plies forward to Allatoona Station. On the 6th I rode back to 
Allatoona, seven miles, found it all that was expected, and gave 
orders for its fortification and preparation as a " secondary base." 


General Blair arrived at Acworth on the 8th with his two divi- 
aons of the Seventeenth Corps — the same which had been on 
7eteran furlongh — had come np from Cairo by way of Clifton, 
on the Tennessee Kiver, and had followed our general route to 
Allatoona, where he had left a garrison of about fifteen hundred 
men. His effective strength, as reported, was nine thousand. 
These, with new regiments and furloughed men who had 
joined early in the month of May, equaled our losses from 
battle, sickness, and by detachments ; so that the three armies 
still aggregated about one hundred thousand effective men. 

On the 10th of June the whole combined army moved for- 
ward six miles, to " Big Shanty," a station on the raih-oad, whence 
we had a good view of the enemy's position, which embraced three 
prominent hills, known as Kenesaw, Pine Mountain, and Lost 
Mountain. On each of these hills the enemy had signal-stations 
and freak lines of parapets. Heavy masses of infantry could be 
distinctly seen with the naked eye, and it was manifest that 
Johnston had chosen his ground well, and with deliberation had 
prepared for battle ; but his line was at least ten miles in ex- 
tent—too long, in my judgment, to be held successfully by his 
force, then estimated at sixty thousand. As his position, how- 
ever, gave him a perfect view over our field, we had to pro- 
ceed with due caution. McPherson had the. left, following 
the railroad, which curved around the north base of Kenesaw ; 
Thomas the centre, obliqued to the right, deploying below Ken- 
esaw and facing Pine Hill ; and Schofield, somewhat refused, 
was on the general right, looking south, toward Lost Mountain. 

On the 11th the Etowah bridge was done ; the railroad was 
repaired up to our very skirmish-line, close to the base of Kene- 
saw, and a loaded train of cars came to Big Shanty. The loco- 
motive, detached, was run forward to a water-tank within the 
range of the enemy's guns on Kenesaw, whence the enemy 
opened fire on the locomotive ; but the engineer was not afraid, 
went on to the tank, got water, and returned safely to his train, 
answering the guns with the screams of his engine, heightened 
by the cheers and shouts of our men. 

The rains continued to pour, and made our developments 


slow and dilatory, for there were no roads, and tiiese had to 
be improvised by each division for its own snpply-train from 
the depot in Big Shanty to the camps. Meantime each army 
was deploying carefully before the enemy, intrenching every 
camp, ready as against a sally. The enemy's cavalry was also 
busy in our rear, compelling us to detach cavalry all the way 
back as far as Kesaca, and to strengthen all the infantry posts 
as far as IS'ashville. Besides, there was great danger, always 
in my mind, that Forrest would collect a heavy cavaby com- 
mand in Mississippi, cross the Tennessee Eiver, and break up 
our railroad below Nashville. In anticipation of this very dan- 
ger, I had sent General Sturgis to Memphis to take command of 
all the cavalry in that quarter, to go out toward Pontotoc, en- 
gage Forrest and defeat him ; but on the 14th of June I learned 
that General Sturgis had himself been defeated on the 10th of 
June, and had been driven by Forrest back into Memphis in 
considerable confusion. I expected that this would soon be fol- 
lowed by a general raid on all our roads in Tennessee. G^eral 
A. J. Smith, with the two divisions of the Sixteenth and Seven- 
teenth Corps which had been with General Banks up Ked River, 
had returned from that ill-fated expedition, and had been ordered 
to General Canby at New Orleans, who was making a diversion 
about Mobile ; but, on hearing of General Sturgis's defeat, 1 
ordered General Smith to go out from Memphis and renew the 
offensive, so as to keep Forrest off our roads. This he did 
finally, defeating Forrest at Tupelo, on the 13th, 14th, and 15th 
days of July ; and he so stirred up matters in North Mississippi 
that Forrest could not leave for Tennessee. This, for a time, 
left me only the task of covering the roads against such minor 
detachments of cavalry as Johnston could spare from his inmie- 
diate army, and I proposed to keep these too busy in their own 
defense to spare detachments. 

By the 14th the rain slackened, and we occupied a continu- 
ous line of ten miles, intrenched, conforming to the irregular 
position of the enemy, when I reconnoitred, with a view to 
make a break in their line between Eenesaw and Pine Moun- 
tain. When abreast of Pine Mountain I noticed a rebel battery 


on its crest, with a continBOUB line of fresli rifle-trench about 
half-way down the hilL Onr skinnishers were at the tinie en* 
gaged in the woods about the base of this hill between the lines, 
and I estimated the distance to the battery on the crest at about 
eight hundred yards. Near it, in plain view, stood a group of 
the enemy, evidently observing us with glasses. General How- 
ard, commanding the Fourth Corps, was near by, and I called 
his attention to this group, and ordered him to compel it to 
keep behiud its cover. He replied that his orders from Gen- 
eral Thomas were to spare artillery-ammunition. This was 
right, according to the general policy, but I explained to him 
that we must keep up the morale of a bold offensive, that he 
must use his artillery, force the enemy to remain on the timid 
defensive, and ordered him to cause a battery close by to fire 
three volleys. I continued to ride down our line, and soon 
heard, in quick succession, the three volleys. The next division 
in order was Gleary's, and I gave him similar orders. General 
Polk, in my opinion, was killed by the second volley fired from 
the first battery referred to. 

In a conversation with General Johnston, after the war, he 
explained that on that day he had ridden in person from Ma- 
rietta to Pine Mountain, held by Bates's division, and was ac- 
companied by Generals Hardee and Polk. When on Pine Moun- 
tain, reconnoitring, quite a group of soldiers, belonging to the 
battery dose by, clustered about him. He noticed the prepara- 
tions of our battery to fire, and cautioned these men to scatter. 
They did so,. and he likewise hurried behind the parapet, from 
which he had an equally good view of our position ; but General 
Polk, who was dignified and corpulent, walked back slowly, not 
wishing to appear too hurried or cautious in the presence of the 
men, and was struck across the breast by an unexploded shell, 
which killed him instantly. This is my memory of the con- 
versation, and it is confirmed by Johnston himself in his " Nar- 
rative,'* page 337, except that he calculated the distance uf our 
battery at six hundred yards, and says that Polk was killed by 
the tUrd shot ; I know that our guns fired by volley, and be- 
lieve that he was hit by a shot of the second volley. It has 


been asserted that I fired the gun which killed General Polk, 
and that I knew it was directed against that generaL The fact 
is, at that distance we coald not even tell that the. group were 
officers at all ; I was on horseback, a couple of hundred yards 
off, before my orders to fire were executed, had no idea that our 
shot had taken effect, and continued my ride down along the 
line to Schofield's extreme flank, returning late in the evening 
to my headquarters at Big Shanty, where I occupied an aban* 
doned house. In a cottonrfield back of that house was our sig- 
nal-station, on the root of an old gin-house. The signal^fficer 
reported that by studying the enemy's signals he had learned the 
"key," and that he could read their signals. He explained to 
me that he had translated a signal about noon, from Pine Moun- 
tain to Marietta, "Send an ambulance for General Polk's 
body;" and later in the day another, "Why don't you send 
an ambulance for General Polk ? " From this we inferred that 
General Polk had been killed, but how or where we knew not; 
and this inference was confirmed later in the same day by the 
report of some prisoners who had been captured* 

On the 15th we advanced our general lines, intending to 
attack at any weak point discovered between Kenesaw and 
Pine Mountain ; but Pine Mountain was found to be abandoned, 
and Johnston had contracted his front somewhat, on a direct 
line, connecting Kenesaw with Lost Mountain. Thomas and 
Schofield thereby gained about two miles of most difficult 
country, and McPherson's left lapped well around the north 
end of Kenesaw. We captured a good many prisoners, among 
them a whole infantry regiment, the Fourteenth Alabama, three 
hundred and twenty strong. 

On the IGth the general movement was continued, when 
Lost Mountain was abandoned by the enemy. Our right nat- 
urally swung round, so as to threaten the railroad below Ma- 
rietta, but Johnston had still further contracted and strength- 
ened his lines, covering Marietta and all the roads below. 

On the 17th and 18th the rain again fell in torrents, mak- 
ing army movements impossible, but we devoted the time to 
strengthening our positions, more especially the left and centre; 


•with a view gradually to draw from the left to add to the right ; 
and we had to hold onr lines on the left extremely strong, to 
gaard against a sally from Kenesaw against onr depot at Big 
Shanty. Garrard's division of cavalry was kept busy on our 
left, McPherson had gradually extended to his right, enabling 
Thomas to do the same still farther ; but the enemy's position 
ma BO very Btrong, and everywhere it was covered by intrench- 
ments, that we found it as dangerous to assault as a permanent 
fort. "We in like manner covered our lines of battle bv similar 
works, and even our skirmishers learned to cover their bodies 
by the simplest and best forms of defensive works, such as rails 
or logs, piled in the form of a simple lunette, covered on the 
outside with earth thrown up at night. 

The enemy and ourselves used the same form of rifle-trench, 
varied according to the nature of the ground, viz. : the trees 
and bushes were cut away for a hundred yards or more in front, 
serving as an abatis or entanglement ; the parapets varied from 
four to six feet high, the dirt taken from a ditch outside and 
from a covered way inside, and this parapet was surmounted by 
a "head-log," composed of the trunk of a tree from twelve to 
twenty inches at the butt, lying along the interior crest of the 
parapet and resting in notdies cut in other trunks which ex- 
tended back, forming an inclined plane, in case the head-log 
should be knocked inward by a cannon-shot. The men of both 
armies became extremely skillful in the construction of these 
works, because each man realized their value and importance to 
himself, so that it required no orders for their construction. As 
soon as a regiment or brigade gained a position within easy dis- 
tance for a sally, it would set to work with a will, and would 
construct such a parapet in a single night ; but I endeavored to 
spare the soldiers this hard labor by authorizing each division 
conmiander to organize out of the freedmen who escaped to us 
a pioneer corps of two hundred men, who were fed out of the 
regular army supplies, and I promised them ten dollars a month, 
under an existing act of Congress. These pioneer detachments 
became very useful to us during the rest of the war, for they 
could work at night while our men slept ; they in turn were not 


expected to fight, and could therefore deep hj day. Our 
enemies used their slaves for a similar pnrpose, but nsoallj kept 
them out of the range of fire by employing them to fortify and 
strengthen the position to their rear nex^ to be occupied in their 
general retrograde. Daring this campaign hundreds if not 
thousands of miles of similar intrenchments were built by 
both armies, and as a rule whichever party attacked one (k 
them got the worst of it. 

On the 19th of June the rebel army again fell back on its 
flanks, to such an extent that for a time I supposed it had re- 
treated to the Chattahoochee Eiver, fifteen miles distant ; but 
as we pressed forward we were soon undeceived, for we found 
it still more concentrated, covering Marietta and the railroad. 
These successive contractions of the enemy's line encouraged 
us and discouraged him, but w^re doubtless justified by sound 
reasons. On the 20th Johnston's position was unusually 
strong. Kenesaw Mountain was his salient; his two flanks 
were refused and covered by parapets and by Noonday and 
Kose's Greeks. His left flank was his weak point, so long 
as he acted on the " defensive," whereas, had he designed to 
contract the extent of his line for the purpose of getting 
in reserve a force with which to strike " offensively " from his 
right, he would have done a wise act, and I was compelled 
to presume that such was his object We were also so far from 
Nashville and Chattanooga that we were naturally sensitive for 
the safety of our railroad and depots, so that the left (McPher- 
son) was held very strong. 

About this time came reports that a large cavalry force of 
the enemy had passed around our left flank, evidently to strike 
this very railroad somewhere below Chattanooga. I therefore 
reenforced the cavalry stationed from Resaca to Cassville, and 
ordered forward from Huntsville, Alabama, the infantry divi- 
sion of General John E. Smith, to hold Kingston securely. 

While we were thus engaged about Kenesaw, General Grant 
had his hands full with Lee, in Virginia. General Ilalleck was 
the chief of staff at Washington, and to him I communicated 
almost daily. I find from my letter-book that on the 2lBt 


of Jane I reported to him tersely and truly the condition of 
facts on that day : ^^ This is the nineteenth day of rain, and the 
prospect of fair weather is as far off as ever. The roads are 
impassable ; the fields and woods become quagmires after a few 
wagons have crossed over. Yet we are at work all the time. 
The left flank is across Koonday Creek, and the right is across 
Nose's Creek. The enemy still holds Kenesaw, a conical moun- 
tain, with Marietta behind it, and has his flanks retired, to cover 
that town and the railroad behind. I am all ready to attack 
the moment the weather and roads will permit troops and artil* 
lery to move with any thing like life." 

The weather has a wonderful effect on troops : in action and 
on the march, rain is favorable ; but in the woods, where all is 
blind and uncertain, it seems almost impossible for an army 
covering ten miles of front to act in concert during wet and 
stormy weather. Still I pressed operations with the utmost 
eftrneetness, aiming always to keep our fortified lines in abso- 
lute contact with the enemy, while with the surplus force we 
felt forward, from one fiank or the other, for his line of com- 
mimication and retreat. On the 22d of June I rode the whole 
line, and ordered General Thomas in person to advance his ex- 
treme right corps (Hooker's) ; and instructed General Schofield, 
by letter, to keep his entire army, viz., the Twenty-third Corps, 
as a strong right fiank in close support of Hooker's deployed 
line. During this day the sun came out, with some promise of 
dear weather, and I had got back to my bivouac about dark, 
when a signal-message was received, dated — 

KuLP House, 5.30 p. m. 
Qtneral Shxbmak : 

Wo have repnlsed two heavy attacks, and fool confident, our only appro- 
henson being from onr extreme right flank. Three entire corps aro in front 

of us. 

Major- General IIooker. 

Hooker's corps (the Twentieth) belonged to Thomases army ; 
Thomas's headquarters were two miles nearer to Hooker than 
mine ; and Hooker, being an old army ofScer, knew that he 


should liayo reported this fact to Thomas and not to me ; I was, 
moreover, speciallj disturbed by the assertion in his report that 
he was uneasy about his rigJU flank^ when Schofield had been 
specially ordered to protect that. I first inquired of my adju- 
tant, Dayton, if he were certain that General Schofield had re- 
ceived his orders, and he answered that the envelope in which 
he had sent them was receipted by General Schofield himself. 
I knew, therefore, that General Sdiofield must be near by, in 
close support of Hooker's right flank. General Thomas had 
before this occasion complained to me of General Hooker's dis- 
position to " switch ofi*," leaving wide gaps in his line, so as to 
be independent, and to make glory on his own account. I there- 
fore resolved not to overlook this breach of discipline and pro- 
priety. The rebel army was only composed of three corps ; I 
had that very day ridden six miles of their lines, found them 
everywhere strongly occupied, and therefore Hooker could not 
have encountered " three entire corps." Both McPherson and 
Schofield had also complained to me of this same tendency of 
Hooker to widen the gap between his own corps and his proper 
army (Thomas's), so as to come into closer contact with one or 
other of the wings, asserting that he was the senior by com- 
mission to both McPherson and Schofield, and that in the 
event of battle he should assume command over them, by virtue 
of his older commission. 

They appealed to me to protect them. I had heard during 
that day some cannonading and heavy firing down toward the 
" Kulp House," which was about five miles southeast of where 
I was, but this was nothing unusual, for at the same moment 
tliere was firing along our lines full ten miles in extent. Early 
the next day (23d) I rode down to the " Kulp House," which 
was on a road leading from Powder Springs to Marietta, about 
three miles distant from the latter. On the way I passed 
through General Butterfield's division of Hooker's corps, which 
I learned had not been engaged at all in the battle of the day 
before ; then I rode along Geary's and Ward's divisions, which 
occupied the field of battle, and the men were engaged in bury- 
ing the dead. I found General Schofield's corps on the Powder 


Springs road, its head of column abreast of Hooker's right, 
therefore constitnting " a strong right flank," and I met Gen- 
erals Schofield and Hooker together. As rain was falling at 
the moment, we passed into a little church standing by the 
road-fiide, and I there showed General Schofield Hooker's sig- 
nal-message of the day before. He was very angry, and pretty 
sharp words passed between them, Schofield saying that his 
head of eolnnm (Hascall's division) had been, at the time of the 
battle, actually in advance of Hooker's line ; that the attack or 
sally of the enemy struck his troops before it did Hooker's; 
that General Hooker knew of it at tlie time ; and he offered to 
go out and show me that the dead men of his advance division 
(Hascall's) were lying farther out than any of Hooker's. Gen- 
eral Hooker pretended not to have known this fact. I then 
aaked him why he had called on me for help, until he had used 
all of his own troops ; asserting that I had just seen Butter- 
field's division, and had learned from him that he had not 
been engaged the day before at all ; and I asserted tliat the 
enemy's sally must have been made by one corps (Hood's), in 
place of three, and that it had fallen on Geary's and Williams's 
divisions, which had repulsed the attack handsomely. As we 
rode away from that church General Hooker was by my side, 
and I told him that such a thing must not occur again; in 
other words, I reproved him more gently than the occasion 
demanded, and from that time he began to sulk. General 
Hooker had come from the East with great fame as a " fighter," 
and at Chattanooga he was glorified by his " battle above the 
elonds," which I fear turned his head. He seemed jealous of 
all the army commanders, because in years, former rank, and 
experience, he thought he was our superior. 

On the 23d of Jime I telegraphed to General Ilalleck this 
summary, which I cannot again better state : 

We oontinne to press forward on the principle of an advance against 
fortified positions. The whole country is one vast fort, and Johnston must 
baye at least fifty miles of connected trenches, with abatis and finished 
batteries. We gain ground daily, fighting all the time. On the 2l8t Gen- 
eral Stanley gained a position near the south end of Kenesaw, from which 


the enemy attempted in vain to drive him ; and the same da/ General T. 
J. Wood^s division took a hill, which the enemj aasanlted three times at 
night without success, leaving more than a hundred dead on the ground. 
Yesterday the extreme right (Hooker and Schofield) advanced on the Pow« 
der Springs road to within three miles of Marietta. The enemj made a 
strong effort to drive them awaj, hnt fsdled ngnallj, leaving more than two 
hundred dead on the field. Our lines are now in close contact^ and the 
fighting is incessant, with a good deal of artillery-fire. As fast as we gain 
one position the enemy has another all ready, hnt I think he will soon have 
to let go Eenesaw, which is the key to the whole country. The weather 
is now better, and the roads are drying up fast Our losses are light, and, 
notwithstanding the repeated breaks of the road to our rear, supplies are 


during the 24th and 25th of June General Schofield extended 
his right as far as prudent, so as to compel the enemy to thin 
out his lines correspondingly, with the intention to make two 
strong assaults at points where success would give us the greatest 
advantage. I had consulted Generals Thomas, McPherson, and 
Schofield, and we all agreed that we could not with prudence 
stretch out any more, and therefore there was no alternative but 
to attack "fortified lines," a thing carefully avoided up to that 
time. I reasoned, if we could make a breach anywhere near the 
rebel centre, and thrust in a strong head of column, that with 
the one moiety of our army we could hold in check the corre- 
sponding wing of the enemy, and with the other sweep in flank 
and overwhelm the other half ^ The 27th of June was fixed as 

^]and in orSertOrTjvei^ the whole, and 
to bo in close communication with all parts of the army, I had 
a place cleared on the top of a hill to the rear of Thomas's cen- 
tre, and had the telegraph-wires laid to it. The points of at- 
tack were chosen, and the troop s were all prepared with as little 
demonstration as possible. \ About 9 a. m. of the day appointed, 
the troops moved to the assafflt, and all along our lines for ten 
miles a furious fire of artillery and musketry was kept up. At 
all points the enemy met us with determined courage and in 
great force. McPherson's attacking column fought up the face 
of the lesser Kenesaw, but could not reach the summit. About 
a mile to the right (just below the Dallas road) Thomas's assault- 


ing colamii reached the parapet, where Brigadier-General Har- 
ker was shot down mortallj wounded, and Brigadier-General 
Daniel McCook (my old law-partner) was desperately wounded, 
from the efEects of which he afterward died. By 11.30 the as- 
sault was in fact over, and had failed J TVe had not broken the 
rebel line at either point, but our assaulting columns held their 
ground within a few yards of the rebel trenches, and there cov- 
ered themselves with parapet. McPherson lost about five hun- 
dred men and several valuable ofScers, and Thomas lost nearly 
two thousand men. This was the hardest fight of the campaign 
up to that date, and it is well described by Johnston in his " Nar- 
rative" (pages 342, 343), where he admits his loss in killed and 
wounded as — 


Hood's corps (not reported) 

Hardee's corps 286 

Loring's (Polk's) 622 

Total... 808 

This, no doubt, is a true and fair statement ; but, as usual, 
Johnston overestimates our loss, putting it at six thousand, 
whereas our entire loss was about twenty-five hundred, killed 
and wounded. 

While the battle was in progress at the centre, Schofield 
croeBed Olley's Creek on the right, and gained a position threat- 
ening Johnston's line of retreat; and, to increase the effect, I 
Qfrdered Stoneman's cavalry to proceed rapidly still farther to 
the light, to Sweetwater. Satisfied of the bloody cost of at- 
tacking intrenched lines, I at once thought of moving the whole 
army to the railroad at a point (Fulton) about ten miles below 
Marietta, or to the Chattahoochee Biver itself, a movement sim- 
ilar to the one afterward so successfully practised at Atlanta. 
All the orders were issued to bring forward supplies enough to 
fill our wagons, intending to strip the raiboad back to Alla- 
toona, and leave that place as our depot, to be covered as well as 
possible by Garrard's cavalry. General Thomas, as usual, shook 
his head, deeming it risky to leave the railroad ; but something 


had to be done, and I had resolved on this move, as reported in 
my dispatch to General Halleck on July Ist : 

General Schofield is now south of OUej's Creek, and on the head of 
Nicl^jack. I have been hurrying down provisions and forage, and to-mor- 
row night propose to move McPherson from the left to the extreme right, 
back of General Thomas. This will bring mj right within three miles of 
the Chattahoochee Biver, and about five miles from the railroad. Bj this 
movement I think I can force Johnston to move his whole armj down from 
Kenesaw to defend his railroad and the Chattahoochee, when I will (bjthe 
left flank) reach the railroad below Marietta ; but in this I must cut loose 
from the railroad with ten days' supplies in wagons. Johnston may oome 
out of his intrenchments to attack Thomas, which is exactly what I want, 
for General Thomas is well intrenched on a line parallel with the enemy 
south of Kenesaw. I think that Allatoona and the line of the Etowah are 
strong enough for me to venture on this move. The movement is substan* 
tially down the Sandtown road straight for Atlanta. 

McPherson drew out of his lines during the night of July 
2d, leaving Garrard's cavalry, dismounted, occupying his trenches, 
and moved to the rear of the Army of the Cumberland, stretch- 
ing down the Nickajack ; but Johnston detected the movement, 
and promptly abandoned Marietta and Kenesaw. I expected 
as much, for, by the earliest dawn of the 3d of July, I was up 
at a large spy-glass mounted on a tripod, which Colonel Poe, 
United States Engineers, had at his bivouac close by our camp. 
I directed the glass on Kenesaw, and saw some of our pickets 
crawling up the hill cautiously ; soon they stood upon the veiy 
top, and I could plainly see their movements as they ran along 
tlio crest just abandoned by the enemy. In a minute I roused 
my staff, and started them off with ordera in every direction for 
a pursuit by every possible road, hoping to catch Johnston in 
the confusion of retreat, especially at the crossing of the Chat- 
tahoochee River. 

I must close this chapter here, so as to give the actual losses 
during June, which are compiled from the official returns by 
months. These losses, from June 1st to July 3d, were all sub- 
stantially sustained about Kenesaw and Marietta, and it was 
really a continuous battle, lasting from the 10th day of June till 




the 3d of SxAjj, when the rebel army fell back from Marietta 
toward the Chattahoochee Kiver. Our losses were : 



Eillod aad illMlDg. 



Tbartb (Hoiward) 







TwvDtteth ^ooker) 

Total, Aimy of tbe CamberbDd. . . . 






KU]«d ud Mining. 



yift4Hiath fLnnn). ......... ^ ^ x * . ^ ^ 




Bbtocnth (Dod««) 


8«niitMiiui (Blidrj 


Tdbd, Army of the Tenneasee 






KUM aad Mlulng. 



TiPntr-thlrd (Scbofleld) 







Totalf Amy of the Ohio 




LoMtan Jane^eggiegate 




Johnston makes his statement of losses from the report of 
his surgeon Foard, for pretty much the same period, viz., from 
June 4th to July 4:th (page 576) : 










1 KiH 








In the tabular statement the " missing " embraces the prison- 
en; and, giving two thousand as a fair proportion of prisoners 


captured hj us for thg month of June (twelve tlionsa 
hundred and eighty-three in all the campaign}, make 
gregate loss in the rebel army of fifty-nine hundred ai 
eight, to ours of Beventy-five hundred and thirty — a leee 
tion than in the relative strength of our two armies, vi 
to ten, thus maintaining our relative superiority, which 
perate game of war justified. 



JULY, 1864. 

As before explained, on the 3d of July, by moving McPher- 
son's entire army from the extreme left, at the base of Kene- 
8aw to the right, below Olley's Creek, and stretching it down 
the Nickajack toward Turner's Ferry of the Chattahoochee, 
we forced Johnston to choose between a direct assault on 
Thomas's intrenched position, or to permit us to make a lodg- 
ment on his raUroad below Marietta, or even to cross the Chat- 
tahoochee. Of course, he chose to let go Kenesaw and Ma- 
rietta, and fall back on an intrenched camp prepared by his 
orders in advance on the north and west bank of the Chatta- 
hoochee, covering the railroad-crossing and his several pontoon- 
bridges. I confess I had not learned beforehand of the exist- 
ence of this strong place, in the nature of a Uie-dvrponty and 
had counted on striking him an effectual blow in the expected 
oonfofiion of his crossing the Chattahoochee, a broad and deep 
river then to his rear. Ordering every part of the army to 
pursue vigorously on the morning of the 3d of July, I rode into 
Marietta, just quitted by the rebel rear-guard, and was terribly 
angry at the cautious pursuit by Garrard's cavalry, and even by 
the head of our infaniry columns. But Johnston had in advance 
deared and multiplied his roads, whereas ours had to cross at 
r^ht angles from the direction of Powder Springs toward Ma- 
rietta, producing delay and confusion. By m'ght Thomas's head of 
ooluxnn ran up against a strong rear-guard intrenched at Smyrna 
eunp-ground, six miles below Marietta, and there on the next 



66 ATLANTA OAMPAIGK [188 — =^ 

day we celebrated our Fourth of July, by a noisy but not « 

desperate battle, designed chiefly to hold the enemy there tL 
Generals McPherson and Schofield could get well into positio: 
below liim, near the Chattahoochee crossings. 

It was here that General Noyes, late Governor of Ohio, lor*^ 
his leg. I came very near being shot myself while reconnoi- 
tring in the second story of a house on our picket-line, wMdi 
was struck several times by cannon-shot, and perfectly riddled 
with musket-balls. 

During the night Johnston drew back all his army and 
trains inside the tete-du-jpont at the Chattahoochee, which proved 
one of the strongest pieces of field-fortification I ever saw. "We 
closed up against it, and were promptly met by a heavy and 
severe fire. Thomas was on the main road in immediate pu^ 
suit ; next on his right was Schofield ; and McPherson on the 
extreme right, reaching the Chattahoochee Eiver below Turner's 
Ferry. Stoneman's cavalry was still farther to the right, along 
down the Chattahoochee Eiver as far as opposite Sandtown ; and 
on that day I ordered Garrard's division of cavalry up the river 
eighteen miles, to secure possession of the factories at Koswell, 
as well as to hold an important bridge and ford at that place. 

About three miles out from the Chattahoochee the main road 
forked, the right branch following substantially the railroad, and 
the left one leading straight for Atlanta, via Paice's Ferry and 
Buckhead. We found the latter unoccupied and unguarded, 
and the Fourth Corps (Howard's) reached the river at Paice's 
Ferry. The right-hand road was perfectly covered by the ^^ 
du-pont before described, where the resistance was very severe, 
and for some time deceived me, for I was pushing Thomas 
with orders to fiercely assault liis enemy, supposing that he was 
merely opposing us to gain time to get his trains and troops 
across the Chattahoochee ; but, on personally reconnoitring, I 
saw the abatis and the strong redoubts, which satisfied me 
of the preparations that had been made by Johnston in antici- 
pation of this very event. Wliile I was with General Jeff. C. 
Davis, a poor negro came out of the abatis, blanched with 
fright, said he had been hidden under a log all day, with a per- 


feet storm of shot, shells, and musket-balls, passing over him, 
till a short lull had enabled him to creep out and make him- 
self known to our skirmishers, who in turn had sent him back 
to where we were. This negro explained that he with about 
^ thousand slaves had been at work a month or more on these 
Very lines, which, as he explained, extended from the river about 
^ mile above the railroad-bridge to Turner's Ferry below, being 
in extent from five to six miles. 

Therefore, on the 5th of July we had driven our enemy to 
cover in the valley of the Chattahoochee, and we held possession 
of the river above for eighteen miles, as far as Roswell, and 
below ten miles to the mouth of the Sweetwater. Moreover, 
we held the high ground and could overlook his movements, 
instead of his looking down on us, as was the case at Kenesaw. 
From a hill just back of Vining's Station I could see the 
houses in Atlanta, nine miles distant, and the whole intervening 
valley of the Chattahoochee; could observe the preparations 
for our reception on the other side, the camps of men and large 
trains of covered wagons ; and supposed, as a matter of course, 
that Johnston had passed the river with the bulk of his army, 
and that he had only left on our side a corps to cover his 
bridges; but in fact he had only sent across his cavalry and trains. 
Between Howard's corps at Paice's Ferry and the rest of 
Thomas's army pressing up against this tete-du-ponty was a 
space concealed by dense woods, in crossing which I came near 
riding into a detachment of the enemy's cavalry ; and later in 
the same day Colonel Frank Sherman, of Chicago, then Oh 
Greneral Howard's staff, did actually ride straiglit into the 
enemy's camp, supposing that our lines were continuous. Ho 
was carried to Atlsmta, and for some time the enemy supposed 
they were in possession of the commander-in-chief of the op- 
posing army. 

I knew that Johnston would not remain long on the west 
bank of the Chattahoochee, for I could easily practise on that 
ground to better advantage our f onner tactics of intrenching 
a moiety in his front, and with the rest of our army cross the 
river and threaten either his rear or the city of Atlanta itself. 


wliicL city was of vital importance to the existence not ouly ♦ 
Lis own army, but of the Confederacy itself. In my dispatc 

of July Cth to General Ilalleck, at ^asliington, I state that— 


Johnston (in Lis retreat from Kcncsaw) has left two breaks in the 
railroad— one aboTe Marietta and one near Yining^s Station. The former 
is already repaired, and Johnston^s army has heard the sonnd of our loco* 
motives. The telegraph is finished to Yining^s Station, and the field-vire 
has just reached my bivouac, and will be ready to convey this message u 
soon as it is written and translated into cipher. 

I propose to study the crossings of the Chattahoochee, and, whenillii 
ready, to move quickly. As a beginning, I will keep the troops and wagons 
well back from the river, and only display to the enemy our picket-linei 
with a few field-batteries along at random. I have already shifted Scho- 
field to a point in our loft rear, whence he can in a single move reach the 
Chattahoochee at a point above the railroad-bridge, where there is a ford. 
At present the waters are turbid and swollen from recent rains ; but if the 
present hot weather lasts, the water will run down very fast. TTe hsT« 
pontoons enough for four bridges, but, as our crossing will be reristed, ve 
must manoeuvre some. All tlie regular crossing-places are covered by forti, 
apparently of long construction ; but we shall cross in due time, and, instead 
of attacking Atlanta direct, or any of its forts, I propose to make a drcnit, 
destroying all its railroads. This is a delicate movement, and most be doos 
with caution. Our army is in good condition and full of confidence ; but 
the weather is intensely hot, and a good many men have fallen with sm- 
stroke. The country is high and healthy, and the sanitary condition of 
the army is good. 

At tliis time Stoneman was very active on our extreme 
right, pretending to be searching the river below Turner's Feny 
for a crossing, and was watched closely by the enemy's cavaliy 
on the other side. McPherson, on tlie right, was equally demon- 
strative at and near Turner's Ferry. Thomas faced substantially 
the intrenched tMe^u-poyit^ and had his left on the Chattahoo- 
chee Eiver, at Paicc's Fciry. Garrard's cavalry was up at Eoe- 
well, and McCook's small division of cavalry was intermediate^ 
above Soap's Creek. Meantime, also, the railroad-construction 
party was hard at work, repairing the railroad up to our camp 
at Vinhig's Station. 

Of course, I expected every possible resistance in crossing 
the Cliattahoochee Eiver, and had made up my mind to feign on 

ATLANTA 0A3^.iIGN. 69 

flie right, but actually to cross over by the left We Lad already 
seeoned a crossing-place at Eoswell, but one nearer was advisa- 
ble; General Sdjofleld had examined the river well, found a 
place just below the mouth of Soap's Creek which he deemed 
advantageous, and was instructed to effect an early crossing 
there, and to intrench a good position on the other side, viz., 
tie east bank. But, preliminary thereto, I had ordered Gen- 
eral Bousseau, at Nashville, to collect, out of the scattered 
detachments of cavalry in Tennessee, a force of a couple of thou- 
sand men, to rendezvous at Decatur, Alabama, thence to make 
i rapid march for Opelika, to break up the railroad-links be- 
tween Georgia and Alabama, and then to make junction with 
me about Atlanta; or, if forced, to go on to Pensacola, or even 
to swing across to some of our posts in Mississippi. General 
Bonsseau asked leave to command tliis expedition himself, to 
which I consented, and on tlie 6th of July he reported that he 
was all ready at Decatur, and I gave him orders to start. Ho 
moved promptly on the 9th, crossed the Coosa below the " Ten 
Islands" and the Tallapoosa below "Horseshoe Bend," having 
passed through Talladega. He struck the railroad west of Ope- 
lika, tore it up for twenty miles, then turned north and came to 
Marietta on the 22d of July, whence he reported to me. This ex- 
pedition was in the nature of a raid, and must have disturbed the 
enemy somewhat ; but, as usual, the cavalry did not work hard, 
and their destruction of the railroad was soon repaired. Eons- 
sean, when he reported to me in person before Atlanta, on the 23d 
of July, stated his entire loss to have been only twelve killed 
and thirty wounded. He brought in four hundred captured mules 
and three hundred horses, and also told me a good story. He said 
he was far down in Alabama, below Talladega, one hot, dusty 
day, when the blue clothing of his men was gray with dust ; he 
had halted his colunm along a road, and he in person, with his 
staff, had gone to the house of a planter, who met him kindly 
on the front-porch. He asked for water, which was brought, 
and as the party sat on the porch in conversation he saw, in 
a stable-yard across the road, quite a number of good mules. 
He remarked to the planter, " My good sir, I fear I must take 

70 ATLA^^:A campaign. [i 

fiome of your mules." The planter remonstrated, saying lie had 
already contributed liberally to the good cause f that it was 
only last week he had given to General Boddy tcn.ii»]le& 
Rousseau replied, " Well, in this war you ehonld be at least 
neutral — ^that is, you should be as liberal to us as to Eodd7''(A 
rebel cavalrj' general). " Well, ain't you on our side ? " "No," 
said Eousscau ; " I am General Eoussean, and all these men yoa 
see are Yanks.'' " Great God ! is it possible ? Are these 
Yanks ? AVho ever supposed they would come away down here 
in Alabama i " Of course, Bousseau took his ten mules. 

Schofield effected his crossing at Soap's Creek veiy hand- 
somely on the 9th, capturing the small guard that was watduBg 
the crossing. By night he was on the high ground beyond, 
strongly intrenched, with two good pontoon-bridges finished, 
and was prepared, if necessary, for an assault by the whole Con- 
federate army. The same day Garrard's cavalry also crossed 
over at Boswell, drove away the cavalry-pickets, and held its 
ground till relieved by Newton's di\'ision of Howard's corps, 
which was sent up temporarily, till it in turn was relieved by 
Dodge's corps (Sixteenth) of the Army of the Tennessee, wldch 
was the advance of the whole of that army. 

That night Johnston evacuated his trenches, crossed over the 
Chattahoochee, burned the railroad-bridge and his pontoon and 
trestle bridges, and left us in full possession of the north or west 
bank — ^besides which, we had already secured possession of the 
two good crossings at Boswell and Soap's Creek. I have always 
tliought Jolmston neglected liis opportunity there, for he had 
lain comparatively idle while we got control of both banks of 
the river above him. 

On the 13th I ordered McPherson, with the Fifteenth Corps, 
to move up to Boswell, to cross over, prepare good bridges^ and 
to make a strong tete-du-pont on the farther side. Stoneman' 
had been sent down to Campbellton, with orders to cross over 
and to threaten the railroad below Atlanta, if he could do so 
without too nmch risk ; and General Blair, with the Seventeenth 
Corps, was to remain at Turner's Ferry, demonstrating as much 
as possible, thus keeping up the feint below while we were actu- 


**ly crossing above. Thomas was also ordered to prepare liis 
bridges at Powers's and Paice's Ferries. By crossing the Chat- 
Wioochee above the raiboad-bridge, we were better placed to 
corer our railroad and depots than below, though a movement 
across the river below the railroad, to the south of Atlanta, 
m^lit have been more decisive. But we were already so far 
from home, and would be compelled to accept battle whenever 
offered, with the Chattahoochee to our rear, that it became im- 
perative for me to take all prudential measures the case ad- 
mitted of, and I therefore determined to pass the river above 
the railroad-bridge — ^McPherson on the left, Schofield in the 
centre, and Thomas on the right. 

On the 13th I reported to General Ilalleck as follows : 

All is welL I have now accmnnlated stores at Allatoona and Mari- 
etta, both fortified and garrisoned points. Have also three places at which 
to croM the Chattahoochee in our possession, and only await General Stono- 
man^s retom from a trip down the river, to cross the army in force and 
move on Atlanta, 

Btoneman is now out two days, and had orders to be back on the fourth 
or fifth day at farthest 

From the 10th to the 15th we were all busy in strengthen- 
ing the several points for the proposed passage of the Chatta- 
hoochee, in increasing the number and capacity of the bridges, 
rearranging the garrisons to our rear, and in bringing forward 
sapplies. On the 15th General Stoneman got back to Powder 
Springs, and was ordered to replace General Blair at Turner's 
Feny, and Blair, with the Seventeenth Corps, was ordered up 
to Roswell to join McPherson. 

On the 17tii we began the general movement against Atlanta, 
Thomas crossing the Chattahoochee at Powers's and Paice's, by 
pontoon-bridges ; Schofield moving out toward Cross Keys, and 
McPherson toward Stone Mountain. "We encountered but little 
opposition except by cavalry. On the 18th all the armies moved 
on a general right wheel, Thomas to Buckhead, forming line of 
battle facing Peach-Tree Creek ; Schofield was on his left, and 
HcFherson well over toward the railroad between Stone Moun- 


tain and Decatur, which he reached at 2 p. li. of that day, aboi^* 
four miles from Stone Mountain, and Beven miles east of Dec^ — 

tur, and there he turned toward Atlanta, breaking up the rail-' 
road as he progressed, his advance-guard reaching I)ecatur aboat 
night, where he came into communication with Schofield's 
troops, which had also reached Decatur. About 10 a. m. of that 
day (July 18th), when the armies were all in motion, one of 
General Thomas's stafi-officers brought me a citizen, one of our 
spies, who had just come out of Atlanta, and had brought fl 
newspaper of the same day, or of the day before, containing 
Johnston's order relinquishing the command of the Confederate 
forces in Atlanta, and Hood's order assuming the command. I 
immediately inquired of General Schofield, who was his class- 
mate at West Point, about Hood, as to his general character, 
etc., and learned that he was bold even to rashness, and coura- 
geous in the extreme ; I inferred that the change of commanders 
meant " fight." Notice of this important change was at once 
sent to all parts of the anny, and every division commander was 
cautioned to be always prepared for battle in any shape. This 
was just what we wanted, viz., to fight in open ground, on any 
thing like equal terms, instead of being forced to run up against 
prepared intrenchments ; but, at the same time, the enemy hav- 
ing Atlanta behind him, could choose the time and place of 
attack, and could at pleasure mass a superior force on our weak- 
est points. Therefore, we had to be constantly ready for 

On the 19th the three armies were converging toward At- 
lanta, meeting such feeble resistance that I really thought the 
enemy intended to evacuate the place. McPherson was moving 
astride of the railroad, near Decatur; Schofield along a road 
leading toward Atlanta, by Colonel Howard's house and the 
distillery ; and Thomas was crossing " Peach-Tree " in line of 
battle, building bridges for nearly every division as deployed. 
There was quite a gap between Thomas and Schofield, which I 
endeavored to close by drawing two of Howard's divisions 
nearer Schofield. On the 20th I was with General Schofield 
near the centre, and soon after noon heard heavy firing in front 


>f Thomas's right, whioh lasted an hour or so, and then ceased. 
t Boon learned that the enemy had made a furious sally, the 
Wow falling on Hooker's corps (the Twentieth), and partidly on 
Johnson's division of the Fourteenth, and Newton's of the 
fourth. The troops had crossed Peach-Tree Creek, were de- 
ployed, but at the time were resting for noon, when, without 
^^oe, the enemy came pouring out of their trenches down upon 
them, they became commingled, and fought in many places hand 
to hand. Oeneral Thomas happened to be near the rear of 
^fewton's division, and got some field-batteries in a good posi- 
tion, on the north side of Peach-Tree Creek, from which he 
directed a furious fire on a mass of the enemy, which was pass- 
ing around Newton's left and exposed flank. After a couple of 
hours of hard and dose conflict, the enemy retired slowly within 
his trenches, leaving his dead and many wounded on the field. 
Johnson's and Newton's losses were light, for they had partially 
covered their fronts with light parapet; but Hooker's whole 
corps fought in open ground, and lost about fifteen hundred 
men. . He reported four hundred rebel dead left on the ground, 
and Hiat the rebel wounded would number four thousand; but 
this was conjectural, for most of them got back within their own 
lines. We had, however, met successfully a bold sally, had re- 
pelled it handsomely, and were also put on our guard ; and the 
event illustrated the future tactics of our enemy. This sally 
came from the Peach-Tree line, which General Johnston had 
caiefnlly prepared in advance, from which to fight us outside of 
Atlanta. We then advanced our lines in compact order, close 
up to these finished intrenchments, overlapping them on our left. 
From various parts of our lines the houses inside of Atlanta 
were plainly visible, though between us were the strong parapets, 
with ditch, yraw^, chevaux-de-frisey and abatis, prepared long in 
advance by Colonel Jeremy F. Gilmer, formerly of the United 
States Engineers. McPherson had the Fifteenth Corps astride 
the Augusta Eailroad, and the Seventeenth deployed on its 
left Schofield was next on his right, then came Howard's, 
Eboker's, and Palmer's corps, on the extreme right. Each 
corpe was deployed with strong reserves, and their trains were 

74 ATL^VNTA CAMPAIGif. [186i 

parked to their rear. McPherson's trains were in Decatur, 
guarded by a brigade commanded by Colonel Spragae of the 
Sixty-third Ohio. The Sixteenth Corps (Dodge's) was crowded 
out of position on the right of McPherson's line, by the con- 
traction of the circle of investment ; and, during the preTioos 
afternoon, the Seventeenth Corps (Blair's) had pushed its open- 
tions on the farther side of the Augusta Bailroad, so as to 
secure possession of a hill, known as Leggett's Hill, because 
General Leggett's division had carried it by assault. Giles A. 
Smith's division was on Leggett's left, deployed with a weak 
left flank " in air," in military phraseology. It was in carrying 
this hill that General Gresham, a great favorite, was badly 
wounded; and there also Colonel Tom Beynolds, now of 
Madison, Wisconsin, was shot through the leg. When the 
surgeons were debating the propriety of amputating it in bis 
hearing, he begged them to spare the leg, as it was very 
valuable, being an " imported leg." He was of Lish birth, and 
this well-timed piece of wit saved his leg, for the suigeom 
thought, if he could perpetrate a joke at such a time, they would 
trust to l^is vitality to save his limb. 

During the night, I had full reports from all parts of our 
line, most of which was partially intrenched as against a sally, 
and finding that McPherson was stretching out too much on his 
left flank, I wrote him a note early in the morning not to ex- 
tend so much by his left; for we had not troops enough to com- 
pletely invest the place, and I intended to destroy utterly all 
parts of the Augusta Kailroad to the east of Atlanta, then 
to withdraw from the left flank and add to the right. In that 
letter I ordered McPherson not to extend any farther to the 
left, but to employ General Dodge's corps (Sixteenth), then 
forced out of position, to destroy every rail and tie of the rail- 
road, from Decatur up to his skirmish-line, and I wanted 
him (McPherson) to be ready, as soon as General Garrard re- 
turned from Covington (whither I had sent him), to move to 
the extreme right of Thomas, so as to reach if possible the rail- 
road below Atlanta, viz., the Macon road. In the morning we 
found the strong line of parapet, "Peach-Trce line," to the 


front of Schofidd and Thomas, abandoned, and our lines were 
advanced rapidly dose up to Atlanta. For some moments I 
Bupposed the enemy intended to evacuate, and in person was 
on horseback at the head of Sehofield's troops, who had ad- 
vanced in front of the Howard House to some open ground, 
from which we could plainly see the whole rebel line of para- 
pets, and I saw their men dragging up from the intervening 
valley, by the distillery, trees and saplings for abatis. Our 
ddnnishers found the enemy down in this valley, and we could 
see the rebel main line strongly manned, with guns in position 
at intervalB. Schofield was dressing forward his lines, and I 
could hear Thomas farther to the right engaged, when General 
McPherson and his staff rodQ up. We went back to the Howard 
Houfic, a double frame-building with a porch, and sat on the 
steps, discussing the chances of battle, and of Hood's general 
character. McPherson had also been of the same class at West 
Point with Hood, Schofield, and Sheridan. We agreed that 
we ought to be unusually cautious and prepared at all times for 
Bailies and for hard fighting, because Hood, though not deemed 
much of a scholar, or of great mental capacity, was undoubtedly 
a brave, determined, and rash man ; and the change of command- 
ers at that particular crisis argued the displeasure of the Con- 
federate Government with the cautious but prudent conduct of 
General Jos. Johnston. 

McPherson was in excellent spirits, well pleased at the prog- 
ress of events so far, and had come over purposely to see me 
about the order I had given him to use Dodge's corps to break 
xtp the nulroad, sayiug that the night before he had gained a 
podtion on Leggett's Hill from which he could look over the 
rebd parapet, and see the high smoke-stack of a large f oundery 
in Atlanta; that before receiving my order he had diverted 
Dodge's two divisions (then in motion) from the main road, 
along a diagonal one that led to his extreme left fiank^ then 
hdd by Giles A. Smith's dividon (Seventeenth Corps), for the 
purpose of strengthening that fiank ; and that he had sent some 
intrenching-tools there, to erect some batteries from which he 
intended to knock down that f oundery, and otherwise to dam- 


age the buildings inside of Atlanta. He said he could put all 
his pioneers to work, and do with them in the time indicated all 
I had proposed to do with General Dodge's two divisions. Of 
course I assented at once, and we walked down the road a 
short distance, sat down by the foot of a tree where I had my 
map, and on it pointed out to him Thomas's position and his 
own. I then explained minutely that, after we had sufficiently 
broken up the Augusta road, I wanted to shift his whole army 
around by the rear to Thomas's extreme right, and hoped thus 
to reach the other railroad at East Point. While we sat 
there we could hear lively skirmishing going on near us (down 
about the distillery), and occasionally round-shot from twelve or 
twenty-four pound guns came through the trees in reply to those 
of Schofield, and we could hear similar sounds all along down 
the lines of Thomas to our right, and his own to the left ; but 
presently the firing appeared a little more brisk (especially over 
about Giles A. Smith's division), and then we heard an occasional 
gun back toward Decatur. I asked him what it meant. We 
took my pocket-compass (which I always carried), and by noting 
the direction of the sound, we became satisfied that the firing 
was too far to our left rear to be explained by known facts, and 
he hastily called for his horse, his staff, and his orderlies. 
McPherson was then in his prime (about thirty-four years 
old), over six feet high, and a very handsome man in every 
way, was universally liked, and had many noble qualities. 
He had on his boots outside his pantaloons, gauntlets on his 
hands, had on his major-general's uniform, and wore a sword- 
belt, but no sword. He hastily gathered his papers (save one, 
which I now possess) into a pocket-book, put it in his breast- 
pocket, and jumped on his horse, saying he would hurry 
down his line and send me back word what these sounds meant. 
His adjutant-general, Clark, Inspector-General Strong, and his 
aides. Captains Steele and Gile, were with him. Although 
the sound of musketry on our left grew in volume, I was 
not so much disturbed by it as by the sound of artillery back 
toward Decatur. I ordered Schofield at once to send a bri- 
gade back to Decatur (some five miles) and was walking up and 


down the porch of the Howard House, listening, when one 
of McPherson's staff, with his horse covered with sweat, dashed 
up to the porch, and reported that General MePherson was 
either "killed or a prisoner." He explained that when they 
had left me a few minutes before, they had ridden rapidly 
across to the railroad, the sounds of battle increasing as they 
neared the position occupied by General Giles A. Smith's divi- 
aion, and that McPherson had sent first one, then another of 
hiB staff to bring some of the reserve brigades of the Fifteenth 
Corps over to the exposed left flank ; that he liad reached the 
head of Dodge's corps (marching by the flank on the diagonal 
road as described), and had ordered it to hurry forward to the 
same point ; that then, almost if not entirely alone, he had fol- 
lowed this road leading across the wooded vdley behind the Sev- 
enteenth Corps, and had disappeared in these woods, doubtless 
with a sense of absolute security. The sound of musketry 
was there heard, and McPherson's horse came back, bleeding, 
wounded, and riderless. I ordered the staff-officer who brought 
this message to return at once, to flnd General Logan (the senior 
officer present with the Army of the Tennessee), to report the 
same &cts to him, and to instruct him to drive back this su^v 
posed small force, which had evidently got around the Seven- 
teenth Corps through the blind woods in rear of our left flank. 
I soon dispatched one of my own staff (McCoy, I think) to Gen- 
eral Logan with similar orders, telling him to refuse his left 
flank, and to flght the battle (holding fast to Leggett's Hill) with 
the Army of the Tennessee ; that I would personally look to 
Decatur and to the safety of his rear, and would rcenf orce him 
if he needed it. I dispatched orders to General Thomas on our 
right, telling him of this strong sally, and my inference that 
the lines in his front had evidently been weakened by reason 
thereof, and that he ought to take advantage of the opportu- 
nity to make a lodgment in Atlanta, if possible. 

Meantime the sounds of the battle rose on our extreme left 
more and more furious, extending to the place where I stood, at 
the Howard House. "Within an hour an ambulance came in 
(attended by Colonels Clark and Strong, and Captains Steele and 


GUe), bearing McPherson's body. I had it carried inside of thi 
Howard Iloase, and laid on a door wrenched from its hinges. Dr. 
Hewitt, of the army, was there, and I asked him to examine the 
wound. He opened the coat and shirt, saw where the ball had en- 
tered and where it came out, or rather lodged mider the skin, 
and he reported that McPherson must have died in a few seconds 
after being hit ; that the ball had ranged upward across his body, 
and passed near the heart. He was dressed just as he left me, with 
gauntlets and boots on, but his pocket-book was gone. On fur- 
ther inquiry I learned that his body must have been in possession 
of the enemy some minutes, during which time it was rifled of 
the pocket-book, and I was much concerned lest the letter I had 
written him that morning should have fallen into the hands of 
some one who could read and understand its meaning. Fortu- 
nately the spot in the woods where McPherson was shot was 
regained by our troops in a few minutes, and the pocketrbook 
found in the haversack of a prisoner of war captured at the time, 
and it and its contents were secured by one of McPherson's staff. 

While we were examining the body inside the house, the 
battle was progressing outside, and many shots struck the build- 
ing, which I feared would take fire; so I ordered Oaptains 
Steele and Gile to carry the body to Marietta. They reached 
that place the same night, and, on application, I ordered his per- 
sonal staff to go on and escort the body to his home, in Clyde, 
Ohio, where it was received with great honor, and it is now 
buried in a small cemetery, close by liis mother's house, which 
cemetery is composed in part of the family orchard, in which he 
used to play when a boy. The foundation is ready laid for the 
equestrian monument now in progress, under the auspices of 
the Society of the Army of the Tennessee. 

The reports that came to me from all parts of the field re- 
vealed clearly what was the game of my antagonist, and the 
ground somewhat favored him. The railroad and wagon-road 
from Decatur to Atlanta lie along the summit, from which the 
waters flow, by short, steep valleys, into the " Peach-Tree '* and 
Chattahoochee, to the west, and by other valleys, of gentler 
declivity, toward the east (Ocmulgee). The ridges and level 


ere mostly cleared, and had been cultivated as com or 
idfl ; but where the valleys were broken, they were left 
3 of nature — ^wooded, and full of undergrowth. Mc- 
i line of battle was across this railroad, along a general 
h a gentle but cleared valley to his front, between him 
defenses of Atlanta ; and another valley, behind him, 
of timber in part, but to his left rear the country was 
v^ooded. Hood, during the night of July 21st, had 
n from his Peach-Tree line, had occupied the f orti- 
of Atlanta, facing north and east, with Stewart's — 
Polk's — corps and part of Hardee's, and with G. W. 
iivision of militia. His own corps, and part of Har- 
l marched out to the road leading from MeDonough to 
and had turned so as to strike the left and rear of Mc- 
» line " in air." At the same time he had sent Wheel- 
ion of cavalry against the trains parked in Decatur. 
J for us, I had sent away the whole of Garrard's divi- 
.valry during the night of the 20th, with orders to pro- 
Oovington, thirty miles east, to bum two important 
jToss the Ulcof auhatchee and Yellow Rivers, to tear up 
ad, to damage it as much as possible from Stone Moun- 
rard, and to be gone four days ; so that McPherson had 
•y in hand to guard that flank. 

nemy was therefore enabled, under cover of the forest, 
ich quite near before he was discovered ; indeed, his 
line had worked through the timber and got into the 
le rear of Giles A. Smith's division of the Seventeenth 
seen, had captured Murray's battery of regular artillery, 
Jirough these woods entirely unguarded, and had got 
1 of several of the hospital camps. The right of this 
B struck Dodge's troops in motion ; but, fortunately, 
3.(Sixteenth) had only to halt, face to the left, and was 
: battle ; and this corps not only held in check the ene- 
Irove him back through the woods. About the same 
1 same force had struck General Giles A. Smith's left 
abled it back, captured four guns in position and the 
jaged in building the very battery which was the spe- 


cial object of McPherson's visit to me, and almost enyeloped 
the entire left flank. The men, however) were skillfnl and 
brave, and fought for a time with their backs to Atlanta. They 
gradually fell back, compressing their own line, and gaining 
strength by making junction with Leggett's division of the 
Seventeenth Corps, well and strongly posted on the hill. One 
or two brigades of the Fifteenth Corps, ordered by MePherson, 
came rapidly across the open field to the rear, from the direo- 
tion of the railroad, filled up the gap from Blair's new left to 
the head of Dodge's column — ^now facing to the general left — 
thus forming a strong left flank, at right angles to the original 
line of battle. The enemy attacked, boldly and repeatedly, the 
whole of this flank, but met an equally fierce resistance ; and 
on that ground a bloody battle raged from little after noon till 
into the night. A part of Hood's plan of action was to sally 
from Atlanta at the same moment ; but this sally was not, for 
some reason, simultaneous, for the first attack on onr extreme 
left flank had been checked and repulsed before the sally came 
from the direction of Atlanta. Meantime, Colonel Spragne, in 
Decatur, had got his teams harnessed up, and safely conducted 
his train to the rear of Schofield's position, holding in check 
Wheeler's cavalry till he had got off all his trains, with the ex- 
ception of three or four wagons. I remained near the Howard 
House, receiving reports and sending orders, urging Generals 
Thomas and Schofleld to take advantage of the absence from 
their front of so considerable a body as was evidently engaged 
on our left, and, if possible, to make a lodgment in Atlanta 
itself; but they reported that the lines to their front, at all 
accessible points, were strong, by nature and by art, and were 
fully manned. About 4 p. m. the expected sally came from 
Atlanta, directed mainly against Leggett's Hill and along the 
Decatur road. At Leggett's Hill they were met and bloodily re- 
pulsed. Along the railroad they were more successful. Sweep- 
ing over a small force with two guns, they reached our main 
line, broke through it, and got possession of De Gross's battery 
of four twenty-pound Parrotts, killing every horse, and turning 
the guns against us. General Charles E. "Wood's division of 


the Fifteenth Corps was on the extreme right of the Anny of 
the Tennessee, between the raiboad and the Howard House, 
where he connected with Schofield's troops. He reported to 
me in person that the line on his left had been swept back, and 
that his connection with General Logan, on Leggett's Hill, was 
broken. I ordered him to wheel his brigades to the left, to ad- 
vance in echelon, and to catch the enemy in flank. General 
Schofield brought forward all his available batteries, to the 
number of twenty guns, to a position to the left front of the 
Howard House, whence we could overlook the field of action, 
and directed a heavy fire over the heads of General Wood's men 
against the enemy ; and we saw Wood's troops advance and en- 
counter the enemy, who had secured possession of the old line 
of parapet which had been held by our men. His right crossed 
this parapet, which he swept back, taking it in flank ; and, at 
the same time, the division which had been driven back along 
the railroad was rallied by General Logan in person, and fought 
for their former ground. These combined forces drove the 
enemy into Atlanta, recovering the twenty-pound Parrott guns 
— but one of them was foimd "bursted " while in the possession 
of the enemy. The two six-pounders farther in advance were, 
however, lost, and had been hauled back by the enemy into 
Atlanta. Poor Captain de Gross came to me in tears, lamenting 
the loss of his favorite guns ; when they were regained he had 
only a few men left, and not a single horse. He asked an order 
for a reequipment, but I told him he must beg and borrow of 
others till he could restore his battery, now reduced to three 
guns. How he did so I do not know, but in a short time he 
did get horses, men, and finally another gun, of the same special 
pattern, and served them with splendid effect till the very close 
of the war. This battery had also been with me from Shiloh 
till that time. 

The battle of July 22d is usually called the battle of At- 
lanta. It extended from the Howard House to General Giles 
A. Smith's position, about a mile beyond the Augusta Kailroad, 
and then back toward Decatur, the whole extent of ground 
being fully seven miles. In part the ground was clear and iu 



part densely wooded. I rode over the whole of it the next day, 
and it bore the marks of a bloody conflict. The enemy had 
retired during the night inside o^ Atlanta, and we remained 
masters of the situation outside. [I,purposely allowed the Army 
of the Tennessee to fight this battle almost unaided, save by 
demonstrations on the part of General Schofield and Thomas 
against the fortified lines to their immediaj 

becaidSTTknew that the attacking force could only be a part of 
Hood's army, and that, if any assistance were rendered by either 
of the other armies, the Army of the Tennessee would be 
jealousT) Nobly did they do their work that day, and terrible 
was the slaughter done to our enemy, though at sad cost to our- 
selves, as shown by the following reports : 

Headquartstu Miutast Diyinoir of ths Muoasim, I 
IN THE Field, neab Atlanta, July 28, 1864. \ 

General IIalleok, Washington^ 2>. C, 

Yesterday moming the enemy fell back to the intrenchmentB proper of 
the city of Atlanta, which are in a general circle, with a ra^ns of one ind 
a half miles, and we closed in. While we were forming oar lines, and se- 
lecting positions for onr batteries, the enemy appeared suddenly out of the 
dense woods in heavy masses on our extreme left, and struck the Seren- 
teenth Corps (General Blair) in flank, and was forcing it back, when the 
Sixteenth Corps (General Dodge) came up and checked the movement, bat 
the enemy^s cavalry got well to our rear, and into Decatur, and for Bome 
hours our left flank was completely enveloped. The fight that resulted wai 
continuous until night, with heavy loss on both sides. The enemy took 
one of our batteries (Murray ^s, of the Regular Army) that was marching in 
its place in column in the road, unconscious of danger. About 4 p. m. the 
enemy sallied against the division of General Morgan L. Smith, of the 
Fifteenth Corps, which occupied an abandoned line of rifle-trenoh near the 
railroad east of the city, and forced it back some four hundred yards, 
leaving in his hands for the time two batteries, but the ground and batteries 
were immediately after recovered by the same troops reinforced. I can- 
not well approximate our loss, which fell heavily on the Fifteenth and 
Seventeenth Corps, but count it as three thousand ; I know that, being on 
the defensive, we have inflicted equally heavy loss on the enemy. 

General McPherson, when arranging his troops about 11 ▲.![., and 
passing from one column to another, incautiously rode upon an amboacade 


withont apprehenmon, at some distanco ahead of his staff and orderlies, and 
was ^ot dead. 

W. T. Sherman, Major- General commanding. 


or THE ITiELO, K£AB Atlaitta, G£okoia, July 25, 1804—8 ▲. X. ) 

MitJ^ar- General Halleok, WashingUm^ D, C* 

Gkhxbal : I find it difficult to make prompt report of results, coupled 
irith some data or information, without occasionallj making mistakes. 
If cPherson's sudden death, and Logan succeeding to the command as it 
were in the midst of battle, made some confusion on our extreme left ; but 
it Boon recovered and made sad havoc with the enemy, who had practised 
one of bis favorite games of attacking our left when in motion, and before 
It bad time to cover its weak flank. After riding over the ground and hear« 
ing the varying statements of the actors, I directed General Logan to make 
an official report of the actual result, and I herewith inclose it 

Though the number of dead rebels seems excessive, I am disposed to 
give full credit to the report that our loss, though only thirty-five hundred 
and twenty-one killed, wounded, and missing, the enemy's dead alone on 
the field nearly equaled that number, viz., thirty-two hundred and twenty. 
Happening at that point of the line when a flag of truce was sent in to 
aak penmssion for each party to bury its dead, I gave General Logan au- 
thori^ to permit a temporary truce on that flank alone^ while our labors 
and fighting proceeded at all others. 

I also send you a copy of General Garrard's report of the breaking of 
the railroad toward Augusta. I am now grouping my command to attack 
the Macon road, and with that view will intrench a strong line of circum- 
vallation with fianks, so as to have as large an infantry column as possible, 
with all the cavalry to swing round to the south and east, to strike that 
road at or below East Point. 

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant, 

W. T. Sherman, Major- General commanding. 


BEFOBS AtlasiTA, Georoia, July 24, 186 L ) 

Major' General W. T. Sherman, commanding Military Division of the Mii- 
GnrsBAL : I have the honor to report the following general summary of 
the result of the attack of the enemy on this army on the 22d inst. 

Total loss, killed, wounded, and missing, thirty-flve hundred and twenty- 
•ne, and ten pieces of artillery. 

We have boned and delivered to the enemy, under a flag of truce sent in 


b J them, in front of the Third Division, Seventeenth Corps, one thoasand 
of their killed. 

The number of their dead in front of the Fourth Divinon of the aame 
corps, includiug those on the ground not now occupied bj our troops, Gen* 
eral Blair reports, will swell the number of their dead on his front to two 

The number of their dead buried in front of the Fifteenth Corps, np to 
this hour, is three hundred and sixty, and the commanding officer reports 
that at least as many more are yet unburied, burying-parties being still at 

The number of dead buried in front of the Sixteenth Corps is four hun- 
dred and twenty-two. We have over one thousand of their wounded in 
our hands, the larger number of the wounded being carried off during the 
night, after the engagement, by them. 

We captured eighteen stands of colors, and have them now. TTe also 
captured five thousand stands of arms. 

The attack was made on our lines seven times, and was seven times re- 
pulsed. Hood^s and Hardee^s corps and WheeleFs cavalry engaged na. 

We have sent to the rear one thousand prisoners, including thirty-three 
commissioned officers of high rank. 

We still occupy the field, and the troops are in fine spirits. A detailed 
and full report will be furnished as soon as completed. 


Our total loss 8,521 

Enemy^s dead, thus far reported, buried, and delivered 

to them 8,220 

Total prisoners sent North 1,017 

Total prisoners, wounded, in our hands 1,000 

Estimated loss of the enemy, at least 10,000 

Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

John A. Logan, Major- GmierdL 

On tlio 22d of July General Eousseau reached Marietta, 
having returned from his raid on the Alabama road at Opelika, 
and on the next day General Garrard also returned from Cov- 
ington, both having been measurably successful. The former 
was about twenty-five hundred strong, the latter about four 
thousand, and both reported that their horses were jaded and 
tired, needing shoes and rest. But, about tliis time, I was ad- 
vised by General Grant (then investing Richmond) that the 


rebel GoTemment had become aroused to the criticd condition 
of things about Atlanta, and that I must look out for Hood being 
greatly reenf orced. I therefore was resolved to push matters, 
and at once set about the original purpose of transferring the 
whole of the Army of the Tennessee to our right flank, leaving 
Schofield to stretch out so as to rest his left on the Augusta 
road, then torn up for thirty miles eastward ; and, as auxiliary 
thereto, I ordered aU the cavalry to be ready to pass around 
Atlanta on both flanks, to break up the Macon road at some 
point below, so as to cut ofE all supplies to the rebel army inside, 
and thus to force it to evacuate, or come out and flght us on 
equal terms. 

But it first became necessary to settle the important question 
of who should succeed General McPherson ? General Logan 
had taken command of the Army of the Tennessee by virtue of 
his seniority, and had done well ; but I did not consider him 
equal to the command of three corps. Between him and Gen- 
eral Blair there existed a natural rivalry. Both were men of great 
courage and talent, but were politicians by nature and experience, 
and it may be that for this reason they were mistrusted by regu- 
lar officers like Generals Schofield, Thomas, and myself. It was 
all-important that there should exist a perfect understanding 
among the army commanders, and at a conference with General 
George H. Thomas at the headquarters of General Thomas J. 
Woods, commanding a division in the Fourth Corps, he 
(Thomas) remonstrated warmly against my recommending that 
General Logan should be regularly assigned to the command of 
the Army of the Tennessee by reason of his accidental seniority. 
"We discussed fully the merits and qualities of every officer of 
high rank in the army, and finally settled on Major-General O. 
O. Howard as the best officer who was present and available for 
the purpose ; on the 24th of July I telegraphed to General Hal- 
leck this preference, and it was promptly ratified by the Presi- 
dent. General Howard's place in command of the Fourth Corps 
was filled by General Stanley, one of his division commanders, 
on the recommendation of General Thomas. All these promo- 
tions happened to fall upon West-Pointers, and doubtless Logau 


and Blair liad some reason to believe that we intended to mono- 
polize the higher honors of the war for the regular officers. I re- 
\ member well my own thoughts and feelings at the time, and feel 
sure that I was not intentionally partial to any class. I wanted 
to succeed in taking Atlanta, and needed commanders who were 
purely and technically soldiers, men who would obey orders and 
execute them promptly and on time ; for I knew that we would 
have to execute some most delicate manoeuvres, requiring the ut- 
most skill, nicety, and precision. I believed that General Howard 
would do all these faithfully and well, and I think the rrault 
has justified my choice. I regarded both Generals Logan and 
Blair as " volunteers," that looked to personal fame and glory 
as auxiliary and secondary to their political ambition,, and not 
as professional soldiers. 

As soon as it was known that General Howard had been 
chosen to command the Army of the Tennessee, General Hooker 
applied to General Thomas to be relieved of the oonmiand of 
the Twentieth Corps, and General Thomas forwarded his appli- 
cation to me approved and heaHily recommended. I at once 
telegraphed to General Halleck, recommending General Slo- 
cum (then at Yicksburg) to be his successor, because Slocum 
had been disj)laccd from the command of his corps at the time 
when the Eleventh and Twelfth were united and made the 

General Hooker was offended because he was not chosen to 
succeed McPhcrson ; but his chances were not even considered; 
indeed, I had never been satisfied with him since his affair at the 
Kulp House, and had been more than once disposed to relieve 
him of his corps, because of his repeated attempts to interfere 
with Generals McPherson and Schoficld. I am told that he says 
that Thomas and I were jealous of him ; but this is hardly 
probable, for we on the spot did not rate liis fighting qualities 
as high as he did, and I am, moreover, convinced that both he 
and General Butterfield went to the rear for personal reasons. 
"We were then two hundred and fiftv miles in advance of our 
base, dependent on a single line of railroad for our daily food. 
We had a bold, determined foe in our immediate front, strongly 


intrenched, with communication open to his rear for anpplies and 
reenforcements, and every soldier realized that we had plenty 
of hard fighting ahead, and that all honors had to be faii-Iy 
earned. General Hooker, moreover, when he got back to 
Cindnnati, reported (I was told) that we had run up against a 
rock at Atlanta, and that the country ought to be prepared to 
hear of disaster from that quarter. 

Until General Slocum joined (in the latter part of August), 
the Twentieth Corps was commanded by General A. S.AVilliams, 
the senior division commander present. On the 25th of July the 
army, therefore, stood thus : the Army of the Tennessee (General 
O. O, Howard commanding) was on the left, pretty much on the 
Bame ground it had occupied during the battle of the 22d, all 
ready to move rapidly by the rear to the extreme right beyond 
Proctor's Creek ; the Army of the Ohio (General Schofield) 
wag next in order, with its left flank reaching the Augusta 
Bailroad ; next in order, conforming closely with the rebel in- 
trenchments of Atlanta, was General Thomas's Anny of the 
Cumberland, in the order of — the Fourth Corps (Sttmley's), 
the Twentieth Corps (Williams's), and the Fourteenth Corps 
(Palmer's). Palmer's right division (Jefferson C. Davis's) was 
strongly refused along Proctor's Creek. This line was about five 
miles long, and was intrenched as against a sally about as strong 
as was our enemy. The cavalry was assembled in two strong 
divisions ; that of McCook (including the brigade of Harrison 
which had been brought in from Opelika by General Rousseau) 
numbered about thirty-five hundred effective cavalry, and was 
posted to our right rear, at Turner's Ferry, where we had 
a good pontoon-bridge; and to our left rear, at and about 
Decatur, were the two cavalry divisions of Stonemau, twenty- 
five hundred, and Garrard, four thousand, united for the time 
and occasion under the command of Major-General George 
Stoneman, a cavalry-officer of high repute. My plan of action 
was to move the Army of the Tennessee to the right rapidly 
and boldly against the railroad below Atlanta, and at the same 
time to send all the cavalry around by the right and left to 
make a lodgment on the Macon road about Jonesboro'. 


All the orders were given, and the morning of the 27th waa 
fixed for commencing the movement. On the 26th I received 
from General Stoneman a note asking permission (after having 
accomplished his orders to break up the railroad at Jonesboro') to 
go on to Macon to rescue our prisoners of war known to be held 
there, and then to push on to Andersonville, where was the great 
depot of Union prisoners, in which were penned at one time aa 
many as twenty-three thousand of our men, badly fed and harshly 
treated. I wrote him an answer consenting substantiaUv to hia 
proposition, only modifying it by requiring him to send back 
General Garrard's division to its position on our left flank after 
he had broken up the railroad at Jonesboro*. Promptly, and on 
time, all got off, and General Dodge's corps (the Sixteenth, of the 
Army of the Tennessee) reached its position across Proctor's 
Creek the same evening, and early the next morning (the 28th) 
Blair's coi-ps (the Seventeenth) deployed on his right, both corps 
covering theii* front with the usual parapet ; the Fifteenth Corps 
(General Logan's) came up that morning on the right of Slair, 
strongly refused, and began to prepare the usual cover. As 
General Jeff. C. Davis's division was, as it were, left out of 
line, I ordered it on the evening before to march down toward 
Turner's Ferrj', and then to take a road laid down on our maps 
which led from there toward East Point, ready to engage any 
enemy that might attack our general right flank, after the same 
manner as had been done to the left flank on the 22d. 

Personally on the morning of the 28th I followed the move- 
ment, and rode to the extreme right, where we could hear some 
skirmishing and an occasional cannon-shot. As we approached 
the ground held by the Fifteenth Corps, a cannon-ball passed 
over my shoulder and killed the horse of an orderly behind; and 
seeing that this gun enfiladed the road by which we were riding, 
we tinned out of it and rode down into a valley, where we left 
our horses and walked up to the hill held by Morgan L. Smith's 
division of the Fifteenth Corps. Near a house I met Generals 
Howard and Logan, who explained that there was an intrenched 
battery to their front, with the appearance of a strong infantry 
support. I then walked up to the ridge, where I found Gen 


end Morgan L. Smith. His men were deployed and engaged 
in rolling logs and fence-rails, preparing a hasty cover. From 
tliifl ridge we could overlook the open fields near a meet- 
ing-house known as " Ezra Chm-ch," close by the Poor-House. 
We conld see the fresh earth of a parapet covering some gmis 
(that fired an occasional shot), and there was also an appear- 
ance of activity beyond. General Smith was in the act of 
Bending forward a regiment from his right flank to feel the 
position of the enemy, when I explained to him and to Generals 
Logan and Howard that they must look out for General JeflE. 
C Davis's division, which was coming up from the direction of 
Turners Ferry. 

As the skirmish-fire warmed up along the front of Blair's 
corps^ as well as along the Fifteenth Corps (Logan's), I became 
convinced that Hood designed to attack this right flank, to pre- 
vent, if possible, the extension of our line in that direction. I 
regained my horse, and rode rapidly back to see that Davis's 
division had been dispatched as ordered. I found General Davis 
in person, who was xmwell, and had sent his division that morn- 
ing early, under the command of his senior brigadier, Mor- 
gan ; but, as I attached great impoii;ance to the movement, he 
mounted his horse, and rode away to overtake and to hurry for- 
ward the movement, so as to come up on the left rear of the 
enemy, during the expected battle. 

By this time the sound of cannon and musketry denoted a 
seYcre battle as in progress, which began seriously at 11 J a. m., 
and ended substantially by 4 p. m. It was a fierce attack by the 
enemy on our extreme right flank, well posted and partially 
covered. The most authentic account of the battle is given by 
Greneral Logan, who commanded the Fifteenth Corps, in his 
official report to the Adjutant-General of the Army of the Ten- 
nessee, thus : 

Headquabtebs Fifteenth Abmt Corps, [ 
BEFORE Atlanta, Geoboia, July 29, 1864. f 

lUuUnanUColanel William T. Claek, Assistant Adjutant- General, Army 
{ffths Tennessee^ present. 
Colovkl: I have the honor to report that, in pursaance of orders, I 


moved my command into position on the right of the Seventeenth Corps, 
which was the extreme right of the army in the field, daring the night of 
the 27th and morning of the 28th ; and, while advancing in line of battle 
to a more favorable position, we were met by the rebel infantry of Hardee^a 
and Lee^s corps, who made a determined and desperate attack on ns at 11} 
A. M. of the 28th (yesterday). 

My lines were only protected by logs and rails, hastily thrown np in 
front of them. 

The first onset was received and checked, and the battle commenced 
and lasted until about three o'clock in the evening. Daring that time six 
successive charges were made, which were six times gallantly repulsed, each 
time with fearful loss to the enemy. 

Later in the evening my lines were several times assaulted vigorously, 
but each time with like result. 

The worst of the fighting occurred on General Harrow's and Morgan L. 
Smith's fronts, which formed the centre and right of the corps. 

The troops could not have displayed greater courage, nor greater deter- 
mination not to give ground ; had they shown less, they would have been 
driven from their position. 

Brigadier-Generals 0. R. Woods, Harrow, and Morgan L. Smith, division 
commanders, are entitled to equal credit for gaUant conduct and skill in 
repelling the assault. . 

My thanks are due to M(\jor-Genorals Blair and Dodge for sending me 
reenforcements at a time when they were much needed. 

My losses were fifty killed, four hundred and forty-nine wounded, and 
seventy-three missing ; aggregate, five hundred and seventy-two. 

The division of General Harrow captured five battle-flags. There were 
about fifteen hundred or two thousand muskets left on the ground. 
One hundred and six prisoners were captured, exclusive of seventy-three 
wounded, who were sent to our hospital, and are being oared for by oar 

Five hundred and sixty-five rebels have up to this time been buried, 
and about two hundred are supposed to be yet unburied. 

A large number of their wounded were undoubtedly carried away in 
the night, as the enemy did not withdraw till near daylight The enemy's 
loss could not have been less than six or seven thousand men. . 

A more detailed report will hereafter be made. 
I am, very respectfully, 

Your obedient servant, 

John a. Logan, 
Major- General^ commanding Fifteenth Army Corp$, 

titeneral Howard, in transmitting tliis report, added: 

1864.] ATLAlfTA CAMPAIGN. 91 

I wiah to express my high gratification with the oondact of the troops 
engaged. I never saw better conduct in battle. General Logan, though ill 
and much worn out, was indefatigable, and the success of the day is as 
much attributable to him as to any one man. 

This was, of course, the first fight in which General Howard 
bad commanded the Army of the Tennessee, and he evidently 
aimed to reconcile General Logan in his disappointment, and to 
gain the heart of his army, to which he was a stranger. He 
Tery properly left General Logan to fight his own corps, but 
exposed himself freely ; and, after the firing had ceased, in the 
afternoon he walked the lines; the men, as reported to mc, 
gathered about him in the most affectionate way, and he at 
once gained their respect and confidence. To this fact I at the 
time attached much importance, for it put me at ease as to the 
future conduct of that most important army. 

At no instant of time did I feel the least uneasiness about 
the result on the 28th, but wanted to reap fuller results, hoping 
that Davis's division would come up at the instant of defeat, 
and catch the enemy in flank ; but the woods were dense, the 
roads obscure, and as usual this division got on the wrong road, 
and did not come into position xmtil about dark. In like man- 
ner, I thought that Hood had greatly weakened his main lines 
inside of Atlanta, and accordingly sent repeated orders to Scho- 
field and Thomas to make an attempt to break in; but both 
reported that they found the parapets very strong and full 

Our men were unusually encouraged by this day's work, 
for they realized that we could compel Hood to come out 
from behind his fortified lines to attack us at a disadvanta^^e. 
In conversation with me, the soldiers of the Fifteenth Coi-ps, 
with whom I was on the most familiar terms, spoke of the 
aflEair of the 28th as the easiest thing in the world ; that, in 
fact, it was a conmion slaughter of the enemy ; they pointed 
out where the rebel lines had been, and how they themselves 
had fired deliberately, had shot down their antagonists, whose 
bodies stiU lay unburied, and marked plainly their lines of 
battle, which must have halted within easy musket-range of 



our men, who were partially protected by their improvificd lm» 
of logs and fence-rails. All bore willing testimony to the cour 
age and spirit of the foe, who, thongh repeatedly repulsed, 
came back with increased determination some six or more 

The next morning tlie Fifteenth Corps wheeled forward to 
the left over the battle-field of the day before, and Davis's di- 
vision still farther prolonged the line, which reached nearly to 
the ever-to-be-remembered " Sandtown road." 

Then, by further thinning out Thomas's line, which was 
well intrenched, I drew another division of Palmer's corps 
(Ward's) around to the right, to further strengthen that flank. 
I was impatient to hear from the cavalry raid, then four days 
out, and was watching for its effect, ready to make a bold push 
for the possession of East Point. General Garrard's division re- 
turned to Decatur on the 31st, and reported that General Stone- 
man had posted him at Flat .Rock, while he (Stoneman) went on. 
The month of July therefore closed with our infantry line strong- I 

ly intrenched, but drawn out from the Augusta road on the left 
to the Sandto^vn road on the right, a distance of full ten measured 

The enemy, though evidently somewhat intimidated by the 
results of their defeats on the 22d and 28th, still presented a 
bold front at all points, with fortified lines that defied a direct 
assault. Our railroad was done to the rear of our camps, Colonel 
"W. W. "Wright having reconstructed the bridge across the Chat- 
tahoochee in six days ; and our garrisons and detachments to the 
rear had so effectually guarded the railroad that the trains from 
Nashville arrived daily, and our substantial wants were well 

The month, though hot in the extreme, had been one of 
constant confiict, without intermission, and on four several oc- 
casions — yiz.j July 4th, 20th, 22d, and 2Sth — these affairs had 
amounted to real battles, with casualty lists by the thousands. 
Assuming the correctness of the rebel surgeon Foard's report, 
on page 577 of Johnston's "Narrative," commencing with July 
ith and terminating with July 31st, we have : 





















I^gnieeki'a'ckTiJrf' ".'"." !!'!!!"!!!! 







To these I add as prisoners, at least 2,000 

Aggregate loss of the enemj in July, 18G4 10,841 

Our losses, as compiled from the official returns for July, 
1864, are : 



gni^ an4 %n«.iwg, 



fvortji ••*•••■••■■■■*••■••*••■••••«•■• 




Voartorath • 




Total, Annj of the Onmberiftnd. . • . 







XUlad ud IflBdiig. 



FUtMBtlu ^ 












Totd, Anii7<tf the Tenneuae 






KllUd ABd Mladnf . 



Twoiity 'third. •••••• 





Total, Army of the Ohio 




AjEEresatekMsfbr Jaly 




In this table the column of " killed and missing " embraces 
the prisoners that fell into the hands of the enemy, mostly lost 
in file Seventeenth Corps, on the 22d of July, and does not 

04: ATLANTA OAiyffAIGN. [1864. 

embrace the losses in the cavalry divisions of Gterrai'd and 
McCook, which, however, were small for July. In all other 
respects the statement is absolutely correct. I am satisfied, 
however, that Surgeon Foard could not have been in possession 
of data suflBciently accurate to enable hiTn to report the losses in 
actual battle of men who never saw the hospitaL During the 
whole campaign I had rendered to me tri-monthly statements of 
"effective strength," from which I carefully eliminated the 
figures not essential for my conduct, so that at all times I knew 
the exact fighting-strength of each corps, division, and brigade, 
of the whole anny, and also endeavored to bear in mind our 
losses both on the several fields of battle and by sickness, and 
well remember that I always estimated that during the month 
of July we had inflicted heavier loss on the enemy than we 
had sustained ourselves, and the above figures prove it conclu- 
sively. Before closing this chapter, I must record one or two 
minor events that occurred about this time, that may prove of 

On the 24:th of July I received a dispatch from Inspector- 
General James A. Hardie, then on duty at the War Depart- 
ment in "Washington, to the effect that Generals Osterhaus and 
Alvan P. Hovey had been appointed major-generals. Both of 
these had begun the campaign with us in command of divisions, 
but had gone to the rear — the former by reason of sickness, and 
the latter dissatisfied with General Schofield and myself about 
tlie composition of his division of the Twenty-third Corps- 
Both were esteemed as first-class officers, who had gained special 
distinction in the Vicksburg campaign. But up to that time, 
when the newspapers announced daily promotions elsewhere, 
no prominent officers serving with me had been advanced a peg, 
and I felt hurt. I answered Hardie on the 25th, in a dispatch 
which has been made public, closing with this language : " If 
the rear be the post of honor, then we liad better all change 
front on Washington." To my amazement, in a few days I 
received from President Lincoln himself an answer, in which 
he caught me fairly. I have not preserved a copy of that dis- 
patch, and suppose it was burned up in the Chicago fire ; but it 


was characteristic of Mr. Lincoln, and was dated tlie 2Gth or 
27ih day of Jtdy, contained unequivocal expressions of respect 
for those who were fighting hard and unselfishly, offering us 
a full share of the honors and rewards of the war, and saying 
that, in the cases of Hovey and Osterhaus, he was influenced 
mainly by the recommendations of Generals Grant and Sher- 
man. On the 27th I replied direct, apologizing somewliat for 
my message to General Hardie, saying that I did not suppose 
such messages ever reached him personally, explaining that 
General Grant's and Sherman's recommendations for Hovey and 
Osterhaus had been made when the events of the Vicksburg 
campaign were fresh with us, and that my dispatch of the 25th 
to General Hardie had reflected chiefly the feelings of the 
ofScers then present with me before Atlanta. The result of all 
this, however, was good, for another dispatch from General 
Hardie, of the 28th, called on me to nominate eight colonels for 
promotion as brigadier-generals. I at once sent a circular note 
to the army-commanders to nominate two colonels from the 
Army of the Ohio and three from each of the others ; and the 
result was, that on the 29th of July I telegraphed the names of 
— Colonel "William Gross, Thirty-sixth Indiana ; Colonel Charles 
O. Walcutt, Forty-sixth Ohio ; Colonel James W. Kiley, One 
Hundred and Fourth Ohio ; Colonel L. P. Bradley, Fifty-first 
Ulinois ; Colonel J. W. Sprague, Sixty-third Ohio ; Colonel 
Joseph A. Cooper, Sixth East Tennessee; Colonel John T. 
Croxton, Fourth Kentuclty ; Colonel William TV. Belknap, Fif- 
teenth Iowa. These were promptly appointed brigadier-gen- 
erals, were already in command of brigades or divisions ; and I 
doubt if eight promotions were ever made fairer, or were more 
honestly earned* during the whole war. 



The month of August opened hot and sultry, but our po- 
sition before Atlanta was healthy, with ample supply of wood, 
water, and provisions. The troops had become habituated to 
the slow and steady progress of the siege ; the skirmish-lines 
were held close up to the enemy, were covered by rifle-trenches 
or logs, and kept up a continuous clatter of musketry. The 
main lines were held farther back, adapted to the shape of the 
ground, with muskets loaded and stacked for instant use. The 
lield-batteries were in select positions, covered by handsome 
parapets, and occasional shots from them gave life and animation 
to the scene. Tlie men loitered about the trenches carelessly, 
or busied themselves in constructing ingenious huts out of the 
abundant timber, and seemed as snug, comfortable, and happy, 
as though they were at home. General Schofield was still on 
the extreme left, Thomas in the centre, and Howard on the 
right. Two divisions of the Fourteenth Corps (Baird's and Jeff. 
C. Davis's) were detached to the right rear, and held in reserve. 

I thus awaited the effect of the cavalry movement against 
the railroad about Jonesboro', and had heard from General 
Garrard that Stoneman had gone on to Macon; during that 
day (August 1st) Colonel Brownlow, of a Tennessee cavalry 
regiment, came in to Marietta from General McCook, and re- 
ported that McCook's whole di^^[sion had been overwhelmed, 
defeated, and captured at Ncwnan. Of course, I was disturbed 
by this wild report, though I discredited it, but made all possible 


preparations to strengtlien our guards along the railroad to tho 
rear, on the theory that the force of cavalry which had defeated 
McCook would at once be on the railroad about Marietta. At 
the same time Garrard was ordered to occupy the trenches on 
^Urleft, while Schofield's whole army moved to the extreme 
rtght, and extended the line toward East Point. Thomas was 
^80 ordered still further to thin out his lines, so as to set free 
the other division (Johnson's) of the Fourteenth Corps (Palm- 
^^b)j which was moved to the extreme right rear, and held in 
^^rve ready to make a bold push from that flank to secure a 
footing on the Macon Eailroad at or below East Point. 

These changes were effected during the 2d and 3d days of 
August, when General McCook came in and reported the actual 
i^esnlts of his cavalry expedition. He had crossed the Chatta- 
hoochee River below Campbellton, by his pontoon-bridge ; had 
then marched rapidly across to the Macon Eailroad at Lovcjoy's 
Station, where he had i-eason to expect General Stoneman ; but, 
not hearing of him, he set to work, tore up two miles of track, 
burned two trains of cars, and cut away five miles of telegraph- 
wire. He also found the wagon-train belonging to the rebel 
army in Atlanta, burned five hundred wagons, killed eight hun- 
dred mules, and captured seventy-two officers and three hundred 
and fifty men. Finding his progress eastward, toward Mc- 
Donougb, barred by a superior force, he turned back to Newnan, 
where he found himself completely surrounded by infantry and 
cavalry. He had to drop his prisoners and fight his way out, 
losing about six hundred men in killed and captured, and then 
returned with the remainder to his position at Turner's Ferry. 
This was bad enough, but not so bad as had been reported by 
Colonel Brownlow. Meantime, rumors came that General 
Stoneman was down about Macon, on the east bank of the Oc- 
mulgee. On the 4th of August Colonel Adams got to Marietta 
with his small brigade of nine hundred men belonging to Stone- 
man's cavalry, reporting, as usual, all the rest lost, and this was 
partially confirmed by a report which came to me all tlie way 
round by General Grant's headquarters before Eichmond. A 
few days afterward Colonel Capron also got in, with another 



small brigade perfectly demoraHzed, and confirmed tlie report 
that General Stoneman had covered the escape of these two 
small brigades, himself standing with a reserve of seven hundred 
men, with which he surrendered to a Colonel Iverson. Thus 
another of my cavalry divisions was badly dainaged, and out of 
the fragments we hastily reorganized three small divisions imder 
Brigadier-Generals Garrard, McCook, and Kilpatrick. 

Stoneman had not obeyed his orders to attack the railroad 
first before going to Macon and Andersonville, but had crossed 
the Ocmulgee Eiver high up near Covington, and had gone 
down that river on the east bank. He reached Clinton, and 
sent out detachments which struck the railroad leading from 
Macon to Savannah at Griswold Station, where they found 
and destroyed seventeen locomotives and over a hundred 
cars ; then went on and burned the bridge across the Oconee, 
and reimited the division before Macon. Stoneman shelled the 
town across the river, but could not cross over by the bridge, 
and returned to Clinton, where he found his retreat obstructed, 
as he supposed, by a superior force. There he became bewil- 
dered, and sacrificed himself for the safety of his command.. He 
occupied the attention of his enemy by a small force of seven 
hundred men, giving Colonels Adams and Capron leave, with 
their brigades, to cut their way back to me at Atlanta. The 
former reached us entire, but the latter was struck and scat- 
tered at some place farther north, and came in by detachments. 
Stoneman surrendered, and remained a prisoner until he was 
exchanged some time after, late in September, at Bough and 

I now became satisfied that cavalry could not, or would not, 
make a sufficient lodgment on the railroad below Atlanta, and 
that nothing: would suffice but for us to reach it with the main 
army. Therefore the most urgent efforts to that end were made, 
and to Schofield, on the right, was conmiitted the change of 
this special object. He had his own corps (the Twenty-third), 
composed of eleven thousand and seventy-five infantry and 
eight hundred and eighty-five artillery, with McCook's broken 
division of cavalry, seventeen hundred and fifty-four men and 

1864.] CAPTURE OF ATLA^T^A, 99 

howei For this purpose I also placed the Fourteenth Corps 
(Palmer) under his orders. This corps numbered at the time 
wventeen thousand two hundred and eighty-eight infantry 
Mid eight hundred and twenty-six artillery; but General 
Palmer claimed to rank General Schofield in the date of his 
commission as major-general, and denied the latter's right to 
exercise command over him. General Palmer was a man of 
ability, but was not enterprising. His three divisions were 
oam|mct and strong, well commanded, admirable on the defen- 
fflVe, but slow to move or to act on the offensive. His corps 
(the Fourteenth) had sustained, up to that time, fewer hard 
faiocks than any other corps in the whole army, and I was 
anxious to ^ve it a chance. I always expected to have a des- 
perate fight to get possession of the Macon road, which was 
then the vital objective of the campaign. Its possession by us 
would, in my judgment, result in the capture of Atlanta, and 
give US the fruits of victory, although the destruction of Hood's 
army was the real object to be desired. Yet Atlanta was known 
as the " Gate-City of the South," was full of foundories, arse- 
nals, and machine-shops, and I knew that its capture would be 
the death-knell of the Southern Confederacy. 

On the 4th of August I ordered General Schofield to make 
a bold attack on the railroad, anywhere about East Point, and 
ordered General Palmer to report to him for duty. He at 
once denied General Schofield's right to command him ; but, 
after examining the dates of their respective commissions, and 
hearing their arguments, I wrote to General Palmer. 

August 4th — 10.45 p. m. 

From the statements niade bj yourself and General Schofield to-daj, 
my decision is, that he ranks yon as a mijor-general, being of the same 
date of present commission, by reason of his previous superior rank as 
Mffadur^eneraL The movements of to-morrow are so important that tlie 
orders of the superior on that flank most be regarded as military orders, 
and not in the nature oi cooperation. I did hope that there would be no 
neeessity for my making this decision ; but it is better for all parties inter- 
ested that no question of rank should occur in actual battle. The Sand- 
town road, and the railroad, if possible, must be gained to-morrow, if it 


costs liolf joor command. I regard the loss of time tbis afternoon ss equal 
to tbo loss of two thousand men. 

I also communicated the substance of this to General Thorn* 
as, to whose army Palmer s corps belonged, who replied («a 
the 5th : 

I regret to hear that Palmer has taken the course he has, and I knov 
that he intends to offer his resignation as soon as he can properly do so. I 
recommend that his application be granted. 

And on the 5th I again wrote to Greneral Palmer, arguing 
the point with him, advising him, as a friend, not to resign at 
that crisis lest his motives might be misconstrued, and because 
it might damage his future career in civil life ; but, at the same 
time, I felt it my duty to say to him that the operations on that 
flank, during the 4th and 5th, had not been satisfactoiy — ^not 
imputing to him, however, any want of energy or skill, but in- 
sisting that " the events did not keep pace with my desires." 
General Schoficld had reported to me that night : 

I am compelled to acknowledge that I have totally failed to make any 
aggressive movement with the Fourteenth Corps. I have ordered General 
Johnson^s division to replace General Ilascall^s this evening, and I propose 
to-morrow to take my own troops (Twenty-third Corps) to the right, and 
try to recover what has been lost by two days' delay. The force may 
likely be too small. 

I sanctioned the movement, and ordered two of Palmer^s 
divisions — Davis's and Baird's — to follow en echelon in sup- 
port of Schoficld, and simimoned General Palmer to meet me 
in person. He came on the 6th to my headquarters, and in- 
sisted on his resignation being accepted, for which formal act I 
referred him to General Thomas. He then rode to General 
Thomas's camp, where he made a written resignation of his office 
as commander of the Fourteenth Corps, and was granted the 
usual leave of absence to go to his home in Illinois, there to 
await further orders. General Thomas recommended that the 
resignation be accepted ; that Johnson, the senior division com- 
mander of the corps, should be ordered back to N^ashviUe as 


chief of cavalry, and that Brigadier-General JefEersou C. Davis, 
the next in order, should be promoted major-general, and as- 
signed to command the corps. These changes had to be referred 
to the President, in Washington, and were, in due time, ap- 
proved and executed; and thenceforward I had no reason to 
complain of the slowness or inactivity of that splendid corps. 
It had been originally formed by General George H. Thomas, 
hi been commanded by him in person, and had imbibed some- 
vhat his personal character, viz., steadiness, good order, and 
deliberation — ^nothing hasty or rash, but always safe, " slow, and 

On August 7th I telegraphed to General Halleck : 

Uave receiTed to-day the dispatches of the Secretary of War and of 
General Grant, which are very satisfactory. We keep hammering away 
•U tiie time, and there is no peace, inside or outside of Atlanta. To-day 
General Schofield got round the line which was assaulted yesterday by 
General Beilly^B brigade, tnmed it and gained the ground wlicre the as- 
lanlt had been made, and got possession of all our dead and wounded. 
He continued to press on that flank, and brought on a noisy but not a 
bloody batUe. He drove the enemy behind his main breastworks, which 
cover the railroad from Atlanta to East Point, and captured a good many 
of the ddrmishers, who are of his best troops — for the mihtia hug the 
breastworks close. I do not deem it prudent to extend any more to the 
rigbt^ bntwill push forward daily by parallels, and make the inside of At- 
lanta too hot to be endured. I have sent back to Chattanooga for two 
thirty-pound Farrotts, with which we can pick out almost any house in 
town. I am too impatient for a siege, and don^t know but tLis is as good 
a place to fight it out on, as farther inland. One thing is certain, whether 
we get inside of Atlanta or not, it w^ill be a used-up community when we 
are done with it. 

In Sehofield's extension on the 5th, General Keilly's brigade 
had struck an outwork, which he promptly attacked, but, as 
usual, got entangled in the trees and bushes which had been 
felled, and lost about five hundred men, in killed and wounded ; 
but, as above reported, this outwork was found abandoned the 
next day, and we could see from it that the rebels were extend- 
ing their lines, parallel with the railroad, about as fast as we 
could add to our line of investment. On the 10th of August 


tlie Parrott tliirty-pounders were received and placed in poa- 
tion ; for a couple of days we kept up a sharp fire from all 
our batteries converging on Atlanta, and at every available point 
we advanced our infantry-lines, thereby shortening and strengtli- 
ening the investment ; but I was not willing to order a direct 
assault, unless some accident or positive neglect on the part of 
our antagonist should reveal an opening. However, it vas 
manifest that no such opening was intended by Hood, who fdt 
secure behind his strong defenses. He had repelled our cavalry 
attacks on his railroad, and had damaged us seriously thereby, 
so I expected that he would attempt the same game against our 
rear. Therefore I made extraordinary exertions to recompose 
our cavalry divisions, which were so essential, both for defense 
and offense. Kilpatrick was given that on our right rear, in 
support of Schofield's exposed flank ; Gturard retained that on 
our general left ; and McCook's division was held somewhat in 
reserve, about Marietta and the railroad. On the 10th, having 
occasion to telegraph to General Grant, then in Washington, I 
used this language : 

Sinco July 2Stli Hood has not attempted to meet us ontside Lis parapets. 
In order to possess and destroy effectaally his commmiications, I may have 
to leave a corps at the railroad-bridge, well intrenched, and ent loose with 
the balance to make a circle of desolation around Atlanta. I do not pro- 
pose to assault the works, which are too strong, nor to proceed by regular 
approaches. I have lost a good many regiments, and will lose more, by the 
expiration of service ; and this is the only reason why I want reinforce- 
ments. We have killed, crippled, and captured more of the enemy than 
we have lost by his acts. 

On the 12th of August I heard of tlie success of Admiral 
Farragut in entering Mobile Bay, which was regarded as a most 
valuable auxiliary to our operations at Atlanta ; and learned that 
I had been commissioned a major-general in tlie regular army, 
which was unexpected, and not desired xmtil successful in the 
capture of Atlanta. These did not cliange the fact that we were 
held in check by the stubborn defense of the place, and a con- 
viction was forced on my mind that our enemy would hold fast, 
even though every house in the town should be battered down 


by our artillery. It was evident that we muBt decoy liim out 
to fight us on something like equal terms, or else, with the whole 
army, raise the siege and attack his communications. Accord- 
ingly, on the 13th of August, I gave general orders for the 
Twentieth Corps to draw back to the railroad-bridge at the Chat- 
tahoochee, to protect our trains, hospitals, spare artillery, and the 
railroad-depot, while the rest of the army should move bodily to 
some point on the Macon Bailroad below East Point. 

Luckily, I learned just then that the enemy's cavalry, under 
General Wheeler, had made a wide circuit around our left flank, 
and had actually reached our railroad at Tilton Station, above 
Besaca, captured a drove of one thousand of our beef-cattle, 
and was strong enough to appear before Dalton, and demand of 
its commander. Colonel Baum, the surrender of the place. Gen- 
eral John E. Smith, who was at Kingston, collected together a 
couple of thousand men, and proceeded in cars to the relief of 
Dalton, when Wheeler retreated northward toward Cleveland. 
On the 16th another detachment of the enemy's cavalry appeared 
in force about Allatoona and the Etowah bridge, when I be- 
came fully convinced that Hood had sent dU of his cavalry to 
raid upon our railroads. For some days our communication 
with Nashville was interrupted by the destruction of the tele- 
graph-lines, as well as railroad. I at once ordered strong re- 
oonnoiflsances forward from our flanks on the left by Garrard, 
and on the right by Kilpatrick. The former moved with so 
much caution that I was displeased ; but Eilpatrick, on the con- 
traiy, displayed so much zeal and activity that I was attracted 
to him at once. lie reached Fairbum Station, on the West 
Point road, and tore it up, returning safely to his position on 
our right flank. I summoned him to me, and was so pleased 
with his spirit and confidence, that I concluded to suspend the 
general movement of the main army, and to send him with his 
small division of cavalry to break up the Macon road about 
Jonesboro', in the hopes that it would force Hood to evacuate 
Atlanta, and that I should thereby not only secure possession 
of the city itself, but probably could catch Hood in the con- 
fusion of retreat ; and, further to increase the chances of success. 


I ordered General Thomas to detach two brigades of Garrard'a 
division of cavalry from the left to the right rear, to act as a 
reserve in support of General Kilpatrick. Meantime, also^ the 
utmost activity was ordered along our whole front by the in- 
fantry and artillery. Kilpatrick got off during the night of the 
18th, and returned to us on the 22d, having made the com- 
plete circuit of Atlanta. He reported that he had destroyed 
three miles of the railroad about Jonesboro*, which he reckoned 
would take ten days to repair ; that he had encountered a divi- 
sion of infantry and a brigade of cavalry (Eoss's) ; that he had 
captured a battery and destroyed three of its guns, bringing 
one in as a trophy, and he also brought in three battle-flags and 
seventy prisoners. On the 23d, however, we saw trains coming 
into Atlanta from the south, when I became more than ever con- 
vinced that cavalry could not or would not work hard enough to 
disable a railroad properly, and therefore resolved at once to 
proceed to the execution of my original plan. Meantime, the 
damage done to our own railroad and telegraph by Wheeler, 
about Eesaca and Dalton, had been repaired, and Wheeler him- 
self was too far away to be of any ser\'dce to his own army, and 
where he could not do us much harm, viz., up about the Hia- 
wassec. On the 2J:th I rode down to the Chattahoochee bridge, 
to see in person that it could be properly defended by the 
single corj^s proposed to be left there for that purpose, and found 
that the rebel works, which had been built by Johnston to resist 
us, could be easily utilized against themselves ; and on returning 
to my camp, at 7.15 p. m. that same evening, I telegraphed to 
General Halleck as follows : 

Heavy fires in Atlanta all day, caused by our artillery. I will bo all 
ready, and will commence the movement around Atlanta by the sonth, to- 
morrow night, and for some time you will hear little of us. I will keep 
open a courier line back to the Chattahoochee bridge, by way of Sandtown. 
The Twentieth Corps will hold the railroad-bridge, and I will move with 
the balance of the army, provisioned for twenty days. 

Meantime General Dodge (commanding the Sixteenth Corps) 
had been woimded in the forehead, had gone to the rear, and hiB 


two divisioiis were distributed to tlie Fifteentli and Serentcentli 
Corp& The real movement commenced on the 25th, at night. 
The Twentieth Corps drew back and took post at the railroad- 
bridge, and the Fourth Corps (Stanley) moved to his right rear, 
closing up with the Fourteenth Corps (Jeff. C. Davis) near Utoy 
Creek ; at the same time Garrard's cavalry, leaving their horses 
out of sight, occupied the vacant trenches, so that the enemy 
did not detect the change at all. The next night (26th) the 
Fifteenth and Seventeenth Corps, composing the Army of the 
Tennessee (Howard), drew out of their trenches, made a wide 
dreuit, and came up on the extreme right of the Fourth and 
Fourteenth Corps of the Army of the Cumberland (Thomas) 
along TJtoy Creek, facing south. The enemy seemed to sus- 
pect something that night, using his artillery pretty freely; but 
I think he supposed we were going to retreat altogether. An 
artilleryHshot, fired at random, killed one man and wounded 
another, and the next morning some of his infantry came out of 
Atlanta and found our camps abandoned. It was afterward re- 
lated that there was great rejoicing in Atlanta " that the Yankees 
were gone ; " the fact was telegraphed all over the South, and 
several trains of cars (with ladies) came up from Macon to assist 
in the celebration of their grand victory. 

On the 28th (making a general left-wheel, pivoting on Scho- 
field) both Thomas and Howard reached the West Point Eailroad, 
extending from East Point to Eed-Oak Station and Fairbum, 
where we spent the next day (29th) in breaking it up thoroughly. 
The track was heaved up in sections the length of a regiment, 
then separated rail by rail ; bonfires were made of the ties and 
of fence-rails on which the rails were heated, carried to trees or 
telegraph-poles, wrapped around and left to cool. Such rails 
could not be used again; and, to be still more certain, we filled 
up many deep cuts with trees, brush, and earth, and commingled 
with them loaded shells, so arranged that they would explode 
on an attempt to haul out the bushes. The explosion of one 
such shell would have demoralized a gang of negroes, and thus 
would have prevented even the attempt to clear the road. 

Meantime Schofield, with the Twenty-third Corps, presented 


a bold front toward East Point, daring and inviting the enemy 
to sally out to attack him in position. His first movement was 
on the 30th, to Mount Gilead Church, then to Morrow's Mills, 
facing Eough and Eeady. Thomas was on his right^ within 
easy support, moving by cross-roads from Ked Oak to the 
Fayetteville road, extending from Couch's to Renfrew's; and 
Howard was aiming for Jonesboro'. 

I was vrith General Thomas that day, which was hot but 
otherwise very pleasant, We stopped for a short noon-rest near 
a little church (marked on our maps as Shoal-Creek Church), 
which stood back about a hundred yards from the road, in a 
grove of native oaks. The infantry column had halted in the 
road, stacked their arms, and the men were scattered about — 
some lying in the shade of the trees, and others were bring- 
ing coiTi-stalks from a large corn-field across the road to feed 
our horses, while still others had arms full of the roasting- 
ears, then in their prime. Hundreds of fires were soon started 
with tlio fence-rails, and the men were busy roasting the ears. 
Thomas and I were walking up and down the road which led 
to the church, discussing the chances of the movement, which he 
thought were extra-hazardous, and our path carried us by a fire 
at which a soldier was roasting his com. The fire was built 
aii;istically ; the man was stripping the ears of their husks, 
standing them in front of his fire, watching them carefully, 
and turning each e;ir little by little, so as to roast it nicely. 
He was down on his knees intent on his business, paying little 
heed to the stately and serious deliberations of his leaders. 
Thomas's mind was running on the fact that we had cut loose 
from our base of supplies, and that seventy thousand men were 
then dependent for their food on the chance supplies of the 
country (already impoverished by the requisitions of the enemy), 
and on the contents of our wagons. Between Thomas and his 
men there existed a most kindly relation, and he frequently 
talked with them in the most familiar way. Pausing awhile, 
and watching the operations of this man roasting his com, he 
said, "AYliat are you doing?" The man looked up smilingly : 
"'Whj, general, I am laying in a supply of provisions." "That 


is rigbt, my man, but don't waste your provisions." As we re- 
samed our walk, the man remarked, in a sort of musing way, but 
lend enough for me to hear: " There he goes, there goes the old 
man, economizing as usual," "Economizing" with com, which 
cost only the labor of gathering and roasting ! 

As we walked, we could hear General Howard's guns at 
intervals, away off .to our right front, but an ominous silence 
continued toward our left, where I was expecting at each mo- 
ment to hear the sound of battle. That night we reached 
Eenfrew's, and had reports from left to right (from General 
Schofield, about Morrow's Mills, to General Howard, within 
a couple of miles of Jonesboro'). The next morning (August 
Slst) all moved straight for the railroad. Schofield reached it 
near Bough and Heady, and Thomas at two points between 
there and Jonesboro'. Howard found an intrenched foe (B[ar- 
dee's corps) covering Jonesboro', and his men began at once 
to dig their accustomed rifle-pits. Orders were sent to Generals 
Thomas and Schofield to turn straight for Jonesboro', tearing up 
the railroad-track as they advanced. About 3 p. m. the enemy 
sallied from Jonesboro' against the Fifteenth corps, but was 
easily repulsed, and driven back within his lines. All hands 
were kept busy tearing up the railroad, and it was not until 
toward evening of the 1st day of September that the Four- 
teenth Corps (Davis) closed down on the north front of Jones- 
boro', connecting on his right with Howard, and his left reaching 
the railroad, along which General Stanley was moving, followed 
by Schofield. Greneral Davis formed his divisions in line about 
4 p. M., swept forward over some old cotton-fields in full view, 
and went over the rebel parapet handsomely, capturing the whole 
of Govan's brigade, with two field-batteries of ten guns. Being 
on the spot, I checked Davis's movement, and ordered General 
Howard to send the two divisions of the Seventeenth Corps 
(Blair) round by his right rear, to get below Jonesboro', and to 
reach the railroad, so as to cut off retreat in that direction. T 
also dispatched orders after orders to hurry forward Stanley, so 
as to lap around Jonesboro' on the east, hoping thus to capture 
the whole of Hardee's corps. I sent first Captain Audenried 


(aide-de-camp), then Colonel Foe, of the Engineeis, and lastly 
General Thomas himself (and that is the only time during the 
campaign I can recall seeing General Thomas nrge his horse into 
a gallop). Night was approaching, and the conntrj on the far- 
ther side of the railroad was densely wooded. General Stanley 
had come up on the left of Davis, and was deploying, though 
there could not have been on his front more than a skirmish- 
line. Had he moved straight on by the flank, or by a slight 
circuit to his left, he would have inclosed the whole ground 
occupied by Hardee's corps, and that corps could not have es- 
caped us ; but night came on, and Hardee did escape. 

Meantime General Slocum had reached his corps (the 
Twentieth), stationed at the Chattahoochee bridge, had relieved 
General A. S. Williams in command, and orders had been sent 
back to him to feel forward occasionally toward Atlanta, to ob- 
serve the effect when we had reached the railroad. That night 
I was so restless and impatient that I could not sleep, and about 
midnight there arose toward Atlanta sounds of shells exploding^ 
and other sound like that of musketry. I walked to the house 
of a farmer close by my bivouac, called him out to listen to the 
reverberations which came from the direction of Atlanta (twenty 
miles to the north of us), and inquired of him if he had resided 
there long. Ho said he had, and that these soimds were just 
like those of a battle. An interval of quiet then ensued, when 
again, about 4 a. m., arose other similar explosions, but I still 
remained in doubt whether the enemy was engaged in blowing 
up his own magazines, or whether General Slocum had not felt 
forward, and become engaged in a real battle. 

The next morning General Hardee was gone, and we all 
pushed forward along the railroad south, in close pursuit, till we 
ran up against his lines at a point just above Lovejoy's Station. 
While bringing forward troops and feeling the new position of 
our adversary, rumors came from the rear that the enemy had 
evacuated Atlanta, and that General Slocum was in the city. 
Later in the day I received a note in Slocum's own handwriting, 
stating that he had heard during the night the very sounds that 
I have referred to ; that he had moved rapidly up from the 


bridge about daylight, and had entered Atlanta unopposed. 
IQs letter was dated inside the city, so there was no doubt of 
the fact. General Thomas's bivouac was but a short distance 
from mine, and, before giving notice to the army in general 
orders, I sent one of my stajff-offlcers to show him the note. In 
a few minutes the officer returned, soon followed by Thomas 
himself, who again examined the note, so as to be perfectly 
certain that it was genuine. The news seemed to him too 
good to be true. He snapped his fingers, whistled, and almost 
danced, and, as the news spread to the army, the shouts that 
arose from our men, the wild hallooing and glorious laughter, 
were to us a full recompense for the labor and toils and hardships 
through which we had passed in the previous three months. 

A courier-line was at once organized, messages were sent 
hack and forth from our camp at Lovejoy's to Atlanta, and to our 
tel^raph-station at the Chattahoochee bridge. Of course, the 
glad tidings flew on the wings of electricity to all parts of the 
North, where the people had patiently awaited news of their 
husbands, sons, and brothers, away down in ^^ Dixie Land ; " and 
congratulations came pouring back full of good-will and patriot- 
ism. This victory was most opportune ; Mr. Lincoln himself 
told me afterward that even he had previously felt in doubt, 
for the summer was fast passing away; that General Grant 
seemed to be checkmated about Richmond and Petersburg, 
and my army seemed to have run up against an impassable 
barrier, when, suddenly and unexpectedly, came the news that 
'^Atlanta was ours, and fairly won." On this text many a fine 
speech was made, but none more eloquent than that by Edward 
Everett, in Boston. A presidential election then agitated the 
North. Mr. Lincoln represented the national cause, and General 
McClellan had accepted the nomination of the Democratic party, 
whose platform was that the war was a failure, and that it was 
better to allow the South to go free to establish a separate 
government, whose comer-stone should be slavery. Success to 
our arms at that instant was therefore a political necessity ; and 
it was all-important that something startling in our interest 
should occur before the election in November. The brilliant 


enccess at Atlanta filled that requirement, and made the election 
of Mr. Lincoln certain. Among the many letters of congratu- 
lation received, those of Mr. Lincoln and General Grant seem 
most important : 

EzxorriTB MAvrnw, ) 

WASHDroTov, D. C, &pUmUr 8, 1864. f 

The national thanks are rendered by the President to Mijor-Gknera] W. 
T. Sherman and the gallant officers and soldiers of his oommand before 
Atlanta, for the distinguished ability and perseverance displajed In the 
campaign in Georgia, which, nnder Divine favor, has resulted in the eaptim 
of Atlanta. The marches, battles, sieges, and other military opentsons, 
that have signalized the campaign, must render it famous in tiie annals of 
war, and have entitled those who have participated therein to the i^ipIanBd 
and thanks of the nation. Abbahuc Lorooury 

President of tU UniUd SUOm 

CiTT PoiHT, VntoimA, September 4, 18M— 9 p. m; 
Major- General Sheiuian: 

I have Just received yonr dispatch announcing the capture of 
In honor of your great victory, I have ordered a salnte to be fired with 
shotted guns from every battery bearing npon the enemy. The saliite will 
be fired within an hoar, amid great rejoicing. 

U. S. Gra27t, Lieutenant-OettsrmL 

These dispatches were communicated to the army in general 
orders, and we all felt duly encouraged and elated by the praise 
of those competent to bestow it. 

The army still remained where the news of success had first 
f oimd us, viz., Lovejoy's ; but, after due reflection, I resolved 
not to attempt at that time a further pursuit of Hood's army, 
but slowly and deliberately to move back, occupy Atlanta, enjoy 
a short period of rest, and to think well over the next step re- 
quired in the progress of events. Orders for this movement 
were made on the 5th September, and three days were given for 
each army to reach the place assigned it, viz. : the Army of the 
Cumberland in and about Atlanta ; the Army of the Tennessee 
at East Point ; and the Army of the Ohio at Decatur. 

Personally I rode back to Jonesboro' on the 6th, and there 
inspected the rebel hospital, full of wounded officers and men 
left by Hardee in his retreat. The next night we stopped at 



Rongli and Beady, and on the 8th of September we rode into 
Atlanta, then occupied by the Twentieth Corps (General Slo- 
cnm). In the Court-House Square was encamped a brigade, 
embracing the Massachusetts Second and Thirty-third Kegi- 
ments, which had two of the finest bands of the army, and 
their music was to us all a source of infinite pleasure dur- 
ing our sojourn in that city. I took up my headquarters in 
the house of Judge Lyons, which stood opposite one comer 
of the Court-House Square, and at once set about a measure 
already ordered, of which I had thought much and long, viz., 
to remove the entire civil population, and to deny to all civilians 
from the rear the expected profits of civil trade. Hundreds 
of sutlers and traders were waiting at Nashville and Chatta- 
nooga, greedy to reach Atlanta with their wares and goods, with 
which to drive a profitable trade with the inhabitants. I gave 
positive orders that none of these traders, except three (one 
for each separate army), should be permitted to come nearer 
than Chattanooga ; and, moreover, I peremptorily required that 
all the citizens and families resident in Atlanta should go away, 
giving to each the option to go south or north, as their interests 
or feelings dictated. I was resolved to make Atlanta a pure 
military garrison or depot, with no civil population to influence 
military measures. I had seen Memphis, Yicksburg, Katchez, 
and New Orleans, all captured from the enemy, and each at once 
was garrisoned by a full division of troops, if not more ; so that 
success was actually crippling our armies in the field by detach- 
ments to guard and protect the interests of a hostile population. 
I gave notice of this purpose, as early as the 4th of September, 
to Greneral Halleck, in a letter concluding with these words : 

If the people raise a howl against mj barbarity and cruelty, I will 
answer that war is war, and not popularity-seeking. If they want peace, 
they and their relatives must stop the war. 

I knew, of course, that such a measure would be strongly 
critidsed, bat xnaTup my mind to do it with the absolve 
certainty of its justness, and that time would sanction its wis- 
dom. I knew that the people of the South would read in 


this measure two important conclusions : one, that we were in 
earnest ; and the other, if they were sincere in their common and 
popular clamor " to die in the last ditch," that the opportunity 
would soon come. 

Soon after our reaching Atlanta, General Hood had sent in 
by a flag of truce a proposition, offering a general exchange of 
prisoners, saying that he was authorized to make such an ex- 
change by the Kichmond authorities, out of the vast number of 
our men then held captive at Andersonville, the same whom 
General Stoneman had hoped to rescue at the time of his raid. 
Some of these prisoners had already escaped and got in, had 
described the pitiable condition of the remainder, and, al- 
though I felt a sympathy for their hardships and Bufferings 
as deeply as any man could, yet as nearly all the prisoners who 
had been captured by us during the campaign had been sent, as 
fast as taken, to the usual depots North, they were then beyond 
my control. There were still about two thousand, mostly cap- 
tured at Jonesboro', who had been sent back by cars, but had 
not passed Chattanooga. These I ordered ba(^, and offered 
General Hood to exchange them for Stoneman, Buell, and such 
of my own army as would make up the equivalent; but I 
would not exchange for his prisoners generally^ because I knew 
these would have to be sent to their own regiments, away from 
my army, whereas all we could give him could at once be put 
to duty in his immediate army. Quite an angry correspondence 
grew up between us, which was published at the time in the 
newspapers, but it is not to be f oimd in any book of which I 
have present knowledge, and therefore is given here, as illus- 
trative of the events referred to, and of the feelings of the actors 
in the game of war at that particular crisis, together with cer- 
tain other original letters of Generals Grant and HaUeck, never 
hitherto published. 


City rourr, VinaufiA, Se-pUmbtr 12, 1864. f 

Major- General W. T. SnEBMAN, commanding Military Division of ths Mis- 

General : I send Lieutenant-Colonel Horace Porter, of mj staff, with 


hiB. Colonel Porter will explain to yon the exact condition of affairs here, 
«tter than I can do in the limits of a letter. Although I feel myself strong 
nongh now for offensiye operations, I am holding on quietly, to get advan- 
Bge of recmits and convalescents, who are coming forward very rapidly. 
ij lines are necessarily very long, extending from Deep Bottom, north of 
he James, across the peninsula formed by the Appomattox and the James, 
nd south of the Appomattox to the Weldon road. This line is very 
trongly fortified, and can be held with comparatively few men; bat, 
rem its great length, necessarily takes many in the aggregate. I propose, 
rhen I do move, to extend my left so as to control what is known as the 
iouthside, or Lynchburg & Petersburg road ; then, if possible, to keep the 
>aiiville road cut. At the same time this move is made, I want to send a 
3rce of from six to ten thousand men against Wilmington. The way I 
•ropose to do this is to land the men north of Fort Fisher, and hold that 
oint. At the same time a large naval fleet will be assembled there, and 
he iron-clads will run the batteries as they did at Mobile. This will give us 
he same control of the harbor of Wilmington that we now have of the 
arbor of Mobile. What you are to do with the forces at yoar command, 
do not exactly see. The difficulties of supplying your army, except when 
bey are constantly moving beyond where you are, I plainly see. If it had 
ot been for Price's movement, Canby could have sent twelve thousand 
lore men to Mobile. From your command on the Mississippi, an equal 
umber could have been taken. With these forces, my idea would have 
«en to divide them, sending one-half to Mobile, and the other half to 
lavaimali. Yon could then move as proposed in your telegram, so as to 
breaten Macon and Augusta equally. Whichever one should be abandoned 
J tlie enemy, you could take and open up a new base of supplies. My object 
ow in sending a staff-officer to you is not so much to suggest operations 
Mr yon as to get your views, and to have plans matured by the time every 
hlng ean be got ready. It would probably be the 5th of October before 
ny of the plans here indicated will be executed. If you have any promo- 
ions to recommend, send the names forward, and I will approve them. 

In conclusion, it is hardly necessary for me to say that I feel you have 
ceomplished the most gigantic undertaking given to any general in this 
rar, and with a skill and ability that will be acknowledged in history as 
nsorpasscd, if not unequaled. It gives me as much pleasure to record 
his in your favor as it would in favor of any living man, myself included. 
Truly yours, U. S. G^atst, Lieutenant- General, 

Hkadquartebs Milttabt DmsiON or the Mississippi, I 
m THX FiBLD, Atlanta, GsosaiA, September 20, 1864. ) 

^jUutenatU' General U, S. Gbant, Commander-in- Chiefs City Pointy Virginia. 
Gnnaux: I have the honor to acknowledge, at the hands of Lieutenant- 


Colonel Porter, of your stafl^ yonr letter of September 12ih, and aocept 
with thanks the honorable and kindly mention of the serrices of tMs army 
in the great cause in which we are all engaged. 

I send by Colonel Porter all official reports which are completed, and 
wiU in a few days submit a list of names which are deemed worthy of pro- 

I think we owe it to the President to save him the invidious task of se- 
lection among the vast number of worthy applicants, and have ordered my 
army commanders to prepare their lists with great care, and to express their 
. preferences, based upon claims of actual capaoitj and services rendered. 

These I will consolidate, and submit in such a form that, if mistakes are 
made, they will at least be sanctioned by the best contemporaneous evidence 
of merit, for I know that vacancies do not exist equal in number to that of 
the officers who really deserve promotion. 

As to the future, I am pleased to know that your army is being steadily 
reinforced by a good class of men, and I hope it will go on xmtil you have 
a force that is numerically double that of your antagonist, so that with one 
part yon can watch him, and with the other push out boldly from your left 
flank, occupy the Southside Railroad, compel him to attack jou in posi- 
tion, or accept battle on your own terms. 

TVe ought to ask our country for the largest possible armies that can be 
N/ raised, as so important a thing as the self-existence of a great nation should 
not be loft to the fickle chances of war. 

Now that Mobile is shut out to the commerce of our enemy, it calls for 
no further effort on our part, unless the capture of the city can be followed 
by the occupation of the Alabama River and the railroad to Columbna, 
Georgia, when that place would be a magnificent auxiliary to my further 
progress into Georgia ; but, until General Canby is much rei^nforced, and 
until he can more thoroughly subdue the scattered armies west of the Mis- 
sissippi, I suppose that much cannot bo attempted by him against the Ala- 
bama River and Columbus, Georgia. 

The utter destruction of Wilmington, North Carolina, is of importance 
only in connection with the necessity of cutting off all foreign trade to our 
enemy, and if Admiral Farragut can get across the bar, and move quickly, 
I suppose he will succeed. From my knowledge of the mouth of Cape 
Fear River, I anticipate more difficulty in getting the heavy ships across 
the bar than in reaching the town of Wilmington; but, of course, the 
soundings of the channel are well known at Washington, as well as the 
draught of his iron-clads, so that it must bo demonstrated to be feasible, or 
else it would not bo attempted. If successful, I suppose that Fort Caswell 
will bo occupied, and the fleet at once sent to the Savannah River. Then 
the reduction of that city is the next question. It once in our possession, 
and the river open to us, I would not hesitate to cross the State of Georgia 


▼ith rixtj thonsand men, hanling some stores, and depending on the coantry 

for the balance. Where a million of people find sahsistence, mj army won^t 

sture; but, as 70a know, in a country like Georgia, with few roads and 

innmnerable streams, an inferior force can so delay an army and harass it, 

that it wonld not be a formidable object ; but if the enemy knew that we 

had onr boats in the Savannah Eiver I could rapidly move to Milledgeville, 

▼here there is abundance of com and meat, and could so threaten Macon 

ad Augusta that the enemy would doubtless give up Macon for Augusta ; 

then I would move so as to interpose between Augusta and Savannah, and 

force hun to give us Augusta, with the only powder-mills and factories 

remaining in the South, or let us have the use of the Savannah Kiver. 

Either horn of the dilemma will be worth a battle. I would prefer his 

holding Augusta (as the probabilities are) ; for then, with the Savannah 

Biver in onr possession, the taking of Augusta would be a mere matter of 

time. This campaign can be made in the winter. 

But the more I study the game, the more am I convinced that it would 
be wrong for us to penetrate farther into Georgia without an objective be- 
yond. It would not be productive of much good. I can start east and 
make a circuit south and back, doing vast damage to the State, but result- 
ing in no permanent good ; and by mere threatening to do so, I hold a rod 
over the Georgians, who are not over-loyal to the South. I will therefore 
giye it as my opinion that your array and Canby's should be relJnforced to 
the mazimnm ; that, after you get Wilmington, you should strike for Savan- 
nah and its river ; that General Canby sliould hold the Mississippi Kiver, 
and Bend a force to take Columbus, Georgia, either by way of the Alabama 
or Appalachicola River ; that I should keep Hood employed and put my 
army in fine order for a march on Augusta, Columbia, and Charleston ; and 
itart as soon as Wilmington is sealed to commerce, and the city of Savan- 
nah is in our possession. 

I think it will be found that the movements of Price and Shelby, west of 
the IGssissippi, are mere diversions. They cannot hope to enter Missouri 
except as ndders; and the truth is, that General Kosecrans should be 
ashamed to take my troops for such a purpose. If you will secure Wil- 
mington and the city of Savannah from your centre, and lot General Canby 
have command over the Mississippi Kiver and country west of it, I will 
•end a force to the Alabama and Appalachicola, provided you give me one 
huidred thousand of the drafted men to fill up my old regiments; and if 
yon win fix a day to be in Savannah, I will Insure our possession of Macon 
and a point on the river below Augusta. The possession of the Savannah 
River la more than fatal to the possibility of Southern independence. 
They may stand the fall of Kichmond, but not of all Georgia. 

I win have a long talk with Colonel Porter, and tell him every tiling 
that may occur to me of interest to you. 


In the mean time, know that I admire yonr dogged pcneyenmce and 
plnck more than ever. If jqa can whip Lee and I can march to the Atlm- 
tic, I think Uncle Abe will give ns a twenty days' leave of absence to aee 
the yonng folks. Yours as ever, 

W. T. Sherman, Major- General 


Washxxgtov, ikpt€tn6er 16, 1864^ ( 
General W. T. Shesmax, Atlantcij Georgia. 

Mt deab Genebal : Yonr very interesting letter of the 4th is jnst re- 
ceived. Its pemsal has given me the greatest pleasure. I have not writ- 
ten before to congratulate you on the capture of Atlanta, the oltjectife 
point of your brilliant campaign, for the reason that I have been sofferiiig 
from my annual attack of " coryza," or hay-cold. It affects my eyes lo 
much that I can scarcely see to write. As yon suppose, I have watched 
your movements most attentively and critically, and I do not hedtate to 
say that your campaign has been the most brilliant of the war. Its results 
are less striking and less complete than those of General Grant at Yicks- 
burg, but then you have had greater difficulties to encounter, a longer line 
of communications to keep up, and a longer and more con^uous strain 
upon yourself and upon yoar army. 

Yon must have been very considerably annoyed by the State negro re- 
cruiting-agents. Your letter was a capital one, and did much good. The 
law was a ridiculous one ; it was opposed by the War Department, but 
passed through tlie influence of Eastern manufacturers, who hoped to 
escape the draft in that way. They were making immense fortunes out 
of the war, and could well afford to purchase negro recruits, and thus save 
their employes at home. 

I fully agree with you in regard to the policy of a stringent draft ; but, 
unfortunately, political influences are against us, and I fear it will not 
amount to much. Mr. Seward*s speech at Auburn, again prophesying, for 
the twentieth time, that the rebellion would be crushed in a few months, 
and saying that there would be no draft, as we now had enough soldiers to 
end the war, etc., has done much harm, in a military point of view. I have 
seen enough of politics here to last me for life. You are right in avoiding 
them. McClellan may possibly roach the TThite House, but he will lose the 
respect of all honest, high-minded patriots, by his affiliation with such 

traitors and Copperheads as B , V , "W , S , & Co. Be 

would not stand upon the traitorous Chicago platform, but he had not the 
manliness to oppose it. A m^jor-general in the United States Army, and 
yet not one word to utter against rebels or the rebellion I I had much 
respect for McClellan before he became a politician, but very little altei 
reading his letter accepting the nomination. 


Hooker certainly made a mistake in leaving before the capture of At- 
lanta. I understand that, when here, he said that yon would fail ; your 
army was discooraged and dissatisfied, etc., etc. He is most unmeasured in 
bif abuse of me. I inclose you a specimen of what he publishes in North- 
em papers, wherever he goes. They are dictated by himself and written 
by W. B. and such worthies. The funny part of the business is, that I had 
nothing whatever to do with his being relieved on either occasion. More- 
over, I have never said any thing to the President or Secretary of War to 
injure him in the slightest degree, and he knows that perfectly well. His 
animosity arises from another source. He is aware that I know some 
things about his character and conduct in California, and, fearing that I 
may use that information against him, he seeks to ward off its effect by 
milking it appear that I am his personal enemy, am jealous of him, etc. I 
know of no other reason for his hostility to me. He is welcome to abuse 
me as much as he pleases ; I don^t think it will do him much good, or me 
mnch harm. I know very little of General Howard, but believe him to be 
a trae, honorable man. Thomas is also a noble old war-horse. It is true, 
■i yoa aay, that he is slow, but he is always sure. 

I have not seen General Grant since the fall of Atlanta, and do not 
know what instructions he has sent you. I fear that Canby has not the 
means to do much by way of Mobile. The military effects of Banks's dis- 
aster are now showing themselves by the threatened operations of Price & 
Co. toward Missouri, thus keeping in check our armies west of the Missis- 

Witli many thanks for your kind letter, and wishes for your future suc- 
cess, yoors truly, H. W. Halleck. 

XIeadquahtebs Militabt Division of the Mississippi, ) 
Atlanta, Gxosoia, September 20, 1864. ) 

Mdj(n^ General Halleck, Chief of Staffs Washington, D, C. 

Gxjtksax: I have the honor herewith to submit copies of a correspond- 
ence between (xeneral Hood, of the Confederate Army, the Mayor of At- 
lanta, and myself^ touching the removal of the inhabitants of Atlanta. 

In explanation of the tone which marks some of these letters, I will only 
osU your attention to the fact that, after I had announced my determina- 
tion, General Hood took upon himself to question my motives. I could not 
tamely submit to such impertinence ; and I have also seen that, in violation 
of all official usage, he has published in the Macon newspapers such parts 
of the correspondence as suited his purpose. This could have had no other 
object than to create a feeling on the part of the people ; but if ho expects 
to resort to snch artifices, I think I can meet him there too. 

It is snfBcient for my Government to know that the removal of the in- 
habitants has been made with liberality and fairness, that it has been at- 


tended with no force, and that no women or cliildren have snffercd, imleai 
for want of provisions by their natural protectors and friends. 

My real reasons for this step were : 

We want all the houses of Atlanta for military storage and occupation. 

We want to contract the lines of defense, so as to diminish the gaimon 
to the limit necessary to defend its narrow and vital parts, instead of em- 
bracing, as tlie lines now do, the vast sabnrbs. This contraction of the 
lines, with the necessary citadels and redoubts, will make it necessary to 
destroy the very houses used by families as residences. 

Atlanta is a fortified town, was stubbornly defended, and fairly captared 
As captors, we have a right to it. 

The residence here of a poor population would compel us, sooner or 
later, to feed them or to see them starve under our eyes. 

The residence here of the families of our enemies would be a tempta- 
tion and a means to keep up a correspondence dangerous and hurtfol to 
our cause ; a civil population calls for provost-guards, and absorbs the at- 
tention of officers in listening to everlasting complaints and special griev- 
ances that are not military. 

These are my reasons ; and, if satisfactory to the Government of the 
United States, it makes no difference whether it pleases General Hood and 
hU people or not. I am, with respect, your obedient servant, 

W. T. Shebman, Major- General commanding, 


IN TUB Field, Atlanta, Georola, SepUmher 7, 1SG4. f 

General IIood, commanding Confederate Army, 

General : I have deemed it to the interest of the United States that the 
citizens now residing in Atlanta should remove, those who prefer it to go 
south, and the rest north. For the latter I can provide food and transpor- 
tation to points of their election in Tennessee, Kentucky, or farther north. 
For the former I can provide transportation by cars as far as Rough and 
Kcady, and also wagons ; but, that their removal may be made with as Httle 
discomfort as possible, it will be necessary for you to help the fEunilea from 
Rough and Ready to the cars at Lovcjoy^s. If you consent, I will under- 
take to remove all the families in Atlanta who prefer to go south to Rough 
and Ready, with all their movable effects, viz., clothing, trunks, reasonable 
furniture, bedding, etc., with their servants, white and black, with the pro- 
viso that no force shall be used toward the blacks, one way or the other. 
If they want to go with their masters or mistresses, they may do so ; other- 
wise they will be sent away, unless they bo men, when they may be em- 
ployed by our quartermaster. Atlanta is no place for families or non-com- 
batants, and I have no desire to send them north if you will assist in con* 
veying them south. If this proposition meets your views, I will consent to 


a trace in the neighborhood of Bough and Beady, stipulating that anj 
wagons^ horses, animals, or persons sent there for the purposes herein 
stated, shall in no manner be harmed or molested ; you in your turn agree- 
ing that any cars, wagons, or carriages, persons or animals sent to the same 
point, shall not be interfered with. Each of us might send a guard of, say, 
one hundred men, to maintain order, and limit the truce to, say, two days 
after a certain time^appointed. 

I have authorized the mayor to choose two citizens to convey to you 
this letter, with such documents as the mayor may forward in explanation, 
and shall await your reply. I have the honor to be your obedient servant, 

W. T. Shebman, Major- General eommanding. 


Oftioe Cuisy oe Staff, September 9, 1804. ) 

Major-General W. T. Shsbman, commanding United States Forces in 

GsmsAL : Tour letter of yesterday^s date, borne by James M. Ball and 
James B. Crew, citizens of Atlanta, is received. You say therein, ** I deem 
it to be to the interest of the United States that the citizens npw residing 
in Atlanta should remove,*' etc. I do not consider that I have any alter- 
native in this matter. I therefore accept your proposition to declare a truce 
of two days, or such time as may be necessary to accomplish the purpose 
mentioned, and shall render all assistance in my power to expedite the 
transportation of citizens in this direction. I suggest that a staff-officer be 
appointed by you to superintend the removal from the city to Bough and 
Beady, while I appoint a like officer to control their removal farther 
south ; that a g^^iard of one hundred men be sent by either party as you 
propose, to maintain order at that place, and that the removal begin on 
Uonday next. 

And now, sir, permit me to say that the unprecedented measure you 
propose 'transcends, in studied and ingenious cruelty, all acts ever before 
brought to my attention in the dark history of war. 

In the name of God and humanity, I protest, belie viug that you will find 
that you are expelling from their homes and firesides the wives and children 
of a braye people. I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

J. B. IIooD, General. 


d TBI FIELD, Atlaztta, Geoboia, September 10, 1864. ) 

Gmeral J. B. Hood, commanding Army of Tennessee, Cor^ederate Army, 

! Gkbterai. : I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter 
of this date, at the hands of Messrs. Ball and Grew, consenting to the ar- 
langements I had proposed to facilitate the removal south of the people of 

120 C^\PTURE OF ATLANTA. [1864. 

Atlanta, who prefer to go in that direction. I inclose yon a eopj of mj 
orders, which will, I am satisfied, accomplish mj purpoee perfectly. 

Yon style the measures proposed '* unprecedented," and appeal to the 
dark history of war for a parallel, as an act of " stadied and ingenious 
cruelty." It is not unprecedented; for General Johnston himself very 
wisely and properly removed the families all the way from Dalton down, 
and I see no reason why Atlanta should be excepted. .Nor is it necessary 
to appeal to the dark history of war, when recent and modem examples are 
so handy. You yourself burned dwelling-houses along your parapet, and I 
have seen to-day fifty houses that you have rendered uninhabitable becanse 
they stood in the way of your forts and men. You defended Atlanta on a 
line so close to town that every cannon-shot and many musket-sbota from 
our line of investment, that overshot their mark, went into the habitations 
of women and children. General Hardee did the same at Jonesboro', and 
General Johnston did the same, last summer, at Jackson, MissisdppL I 
have not accused you of heartless cruelty, but merely instance these cases 
of very recent occurrence, and could go on and enumerate hundreds of 
others, and challenge any fair man to judge which of us has the heart of 
pity for the families of a " brave people.*' 

I say that it is kindness to these families of Atlanta to remove them 
now, at once, from scenes that women and children should not be exposed 
to, and the ^^ bravo people " should scorn to commit their wives and children 
to the rude barbarians who thus, as you say, violate the Liws of war, as 
illustrated in the pages of its dark history. 

In the name of common-sense, I ask you not to appeal to a just God in 
such a sacrilegious manner. You who, in the midst of peace and prosperity, 
have plunged a nation into war — dark and cruel war — who dared and bad- 
\ gered us to battle, insulted our flag, seized our arsenals and forts that were 
left in the honorable custody of peaceful ordnance-sergeants, seized and 
made " prisoners of war " the very garrisons sent to protect your people 
against negroes and Indiaps, long before any overt act was committed by 
the (to you) hated Lincoln Government ; tried to force Kentucky and Mis- 
souri into rebellion, spite of themselves ; falsified the vote of Louidana ; 
turned loose your privateers to plunder unarmed ships; expelled Union 
families by the thousands, burned their houses, and declared, by an act of 
your Congress, the confiscation of all debts due Northern men for goods 
had and received ! Talk thus to the marines, but not to me, who have seen 
these things, and who will this day moke as much sacrifice for the peace 
and honor of the South as the best-bom Southerner among you I If we must 
be enemies, let us be men, and fight it out as wo propose to do, and not 
deal in such hypocritical appeals to God and humanity. God will judge us 
in due time, and he will pronounce whether it be more humane to fight 
with a town full of women and the families of a bravo people at our back, 


or to remove them in time to places of safety among their own fHends and 
people. I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

W. T. Sheemax, Major- General commanding, 

IIeadquabters Ab>[t of Tennessxe, ) 
September 12, 1804. ) 

Major^ General W. T. Shebman, commanding Military Division of the Mie- 

GxNSRix: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter 
of the 9th Inst, with its inclosnre in reference to the women, children, and 
others, whom you have thought proper to expel from their homes in the 
city of Atlanta. Hod you seen proper to let the mattei rest there, I would 
gladly hare allowed your letter to close this correspondence, and, without 
your expressing it in words, would have been willing to believe that, while 
'^ th^ interests of the United States," in your opinion, compelled you to an 
aet of barbarous cruelty, you regretted the necessity, and we would have 
dropped the subject ; but you have chosen to indulge in statements which 
I feel compelled to notice, at least so far as to signify my dissent, and not 
allow ailence in regard to them to be construed as acquiescence. 

I see nothing in your communication which induces me to modify the 
language of condemnation with which I characterized your order. It but 
strengthens me in the opinion that it stands '* preGiuinent in the dark his- 
tory of war for studied and ingenious cruelty.^* Your original order was 
stripped of all pretenses ; you announced the edict for the sole reason that 
it was *' to the interest of the United States." This alone you offered to us 
and the civilized world as an all-sufficient reason for disregarding the laws 
of God and man. Tou say that ** General Johnston himself very wisely and 
properly removed the families all the way from Dalton down." It is due 
to that gallant soldier and gentleman to say that no act of his distinguished 
career gives the least color to your unfounded aspersions upon his conduct. 
He depopulated no villages, nor towns, nor cities, either friendly or hostile. 
He offered and extended friendly aid to his unfortunate fellow-citizens who 
desired to flee from your fraternal embraces. You are equally unfortunate 
in yonr attempt to find a Justification for this act of cruelty, either in the 
defense of Jonesboro^ by General Hardee, or of Atlanta, by myself. Gen- 
eral Hardee defended his position in front of Jonesboro' at the expense of 
injury to the houses ; an ordinary, proper, and Justifiable act of war. I 
defended Atlanta at the same risk and cost. If there was any fault in either 
case, it was yonr own, in not giving notice, especially in the case of Atlanta, 
of yonr purpose to shell the town, which is usual in war among civilized 
nations. No inhabitant was expelled from his home and fireside by the 
orders of General Hardee or myself, and therefore your recent order can 
find no support jfrom the conduct of either of us. I feel no other emotion 


other than pain in roading that portion of jour letter which attempts to jni- 
tify your shelling Atlanta without notice under pretense that I defended At- 
lanta upon a line so close to town that every cannon-shot and many mus- 
ket-balls from yonr line of investment, that overshot their mark, went into 
the habitations of women and children. I made no complaint of your firing 
into Atlanta in any way yon thought proper. I make none now, bat there 
are a hundred thousand witnesses that yon fired into the habitations of 
women and children for weeks, firing far above and miles beyond my line 
of defense. I have too good an opinion, founded both upon observation 
and experience, of the skill of your artillerists, to credit the insinuation 
that they for several weeks unintentionally fired too high for my modest 
field-works, and slaughtered women and children by accident and want of 

Tlie residue of your letter is rather discussion. It opens a wide field for 
the discussion of questions which I do not feel are committed to me. I am 
only a general of one of the armies of the Confederate States, charged with 
military operations in the field, under the direction of my superior officers, 
and I am not called upon to discuss with you the causes of the present war, 
or the political questions which led to or resulted from it. These grave and 
important questions have been committed to far abler hands than mine, 
and I shall only refer to them so far as to repel any uigust conclusion which 
might be drawn from my silence. You charge my coxmtry with "daring 
and badgering you to battle." The truth is, we sent conmiissioners to you, 
respectfully offering a peaceful separation, before the first gun was fired on 
cither side. You say we insulted your flag. The truth is, we fired upon 
it, and those who fought under it, when you came to our doors upon the 
mission of subjugation. You say we seized upon your forts and arsenals, 
and made prisoners of the garrisons sent to protect us against negroes and 
Indians. The truth is, we, by force of arms, drove out insolent intruders 
and took possession of our own forts and arsenals, to resist your claims to 
dominion over masters, slaves, and Indians, all of whom are to this day, 
with a unanimity unexampled in the history of the world, warring against 
your attempts to become their masters. You say that we tried to force 
Missouri and Kentucky into rebellion in spite of themselves. The truth is, 
my Government, from the beginning of this struggle to this hour, has agam 
and again offered, before the whole world, to leave it to the unbiased will 
of these States, and all others, to determine for themselves whether they 
will cast their destiny with your Government or ours; and your Government 
has resisted this fundamental principle of free institutions with the bayo- 
net, and labors daily, by force and fraud, to fasten its hateful tyranny upon 
the unfortunate freemen of these States. You say we falsified the vote of 
Louisiana. The truth is, Louisiana not only separated herself from your 
Government by nearly a unanimous vote of her peo])le, but has vindicated 


the act upon every battle-field from Gettysbarg to the Sabine, and has ex- 
hibited an heroic devotion to her decision which challenges the admiration 
and respect of every man capable of feeling sympathy for the oppressed or 
admiration for heroic valor. Yon say that we turned loose pirates to plun- 
der yonr unarmed ships. The truth is, when you robbed us of our part of 
the navy, we built and bought a few vessels, hoisted the flag of our country, 
and swept the seas, in defiance of your navy, around the whole circumfer- 
ence of the globe. You say we have expelled Union families by thousands. 
The truth is, not a single family has been expelled from the Confederate 
Stat^ that I am aware of; but, on the contrary, the moderation of our 
Government toward traitors has been a fruitful theme of denunciation by 
ita enemies and well-meaning friends of our cause. You say my Govern- 
ment, by acts of Congress, has confiscated *^ all debts due Northern men 
for goods sold and delivered.'' The truth is, our Congress gave due and 
ample time to your merchants and traders to depart from our shores with 
their ships, goods, and effects, and only sequestrated the property of our 
enemies in retaliation for their acts— declaring us traitors, and confiscating 
our property wherever their power extended, either in their country or our 
own. Such are your accusations, and such are the facts known of all men 
to be true. 

you order into exile the whole population of a city; drive men, 
women, and children from their homes at the point of the bayonet, under 
the plea that it is to the interest of your Government, and on the claim 
that it is an act of '* kindness to these families of Atlanta." Butler only 
banished from New Orleans the registered enemies of his Government, and 
acknowledged that he did it as a punishment. You issue a sweeping edict, 
covering all the inhabitants of a city, and add insult to the injury heaped 
upon the defenseless by assuming that you have done them a kindness. 
This yon follow by the assertion that you will " make as much sacrifice for 
the peace and honor of the South as the best-born Southerner.'' And, be- 
cause I characterize what you call a kindness as being real cruelty, you pre- 
sume to sit in judgment between me and my God ; and you decide that my 
earnest prayer to the Almighty Father to save our women and children 
from what yon call kindness, is a " sacrilegious, hypocritical appeal." 

Yon came into our country with your army, avowedly for the purpose 
of snbjngating free white men, women, and children, and not only intend 
to role over them, but you make negroes your allies, and desire to place 
over ns an inferior race, which we have raised from barbarism to its present 
podtion, which is the highest ever attained by that race, in any country, in 
all time. I must, therefore, decline to accept your statements in reference 
to yonr kindness toward the people of Atlanta, and your willingness to sac- 
rifice every thing for the peace and honor of the South, and refuse to be 
foremed by yonr decision in regard to matters between myself, my coun- 
try, and my GkxL 


You say, " Let us fight it out like men," To tliis my reply is — ^for my- 
selj^ and I beliere for all the true men, ay, and women and children, in my 
country — we wiJl fight you to the deatiil Better die a thousand deaths 
than submit to live under you or your Grovemment and your negro allies I 

Having answered the points forced upon me by your letter of the 9th 

of September, I close this correspondence with you ; and, notwithstanding 

your comments upon my appeal to God in the cause of humanity, I again 

humbly and reverently invoke his almighty aid in defense of Juatice and 

right. Respectfully, your obedient servant, 

J. B. Hood, General, 

Atlasta, Geoboul, S4g4emb€r 11, 1864. 
Major- General W. T. Sherman. 

Sib : We the undersigned. Mayor and two of the GouncQ for the city of 
Atlanta, for the time being the only legal organ of the people of the said 
city, to express their wants and wishes, ask leave most earnestly but re- 
spectfully to petition you to reconsider the order requiring them to leave 

At first view, it struck us that the measure would involve extraordi- 
nary hardship and loss, but since we have seen the practical execution of it 
60 far as it has progressed, and the individual condition of the people, and 
heard their statements as to the inconveniences, loss, and suffering attehd- 
ing it, we are satisfied that the amount of it will involve in the aggr^^te 
consequences appalling and heart-rending. 

Many poor women are in advanced state of pregnancy, others now hav- 
ing young children, and whoso husbands for the greater part are either in 
the army, prisoners, or dead. Some say : *' I have such a one sick at my 
house ; who will wait on them when I am gone? " Others say : " What are we 
to do? We have no house to go to, and no means to buy, build, or rent any; no 
parents, relatives, or friends, to go to." Another says : " I will try and take this 
or that article of property, but such and such things I* must leave behind, 
though I need them much." We reply to them : " General Sherman will carry 
your property to Rough and Ready, and General Hood will take it thence 
on." And they will reply to that : " But I want to leave the rsdlroad at such 
a place, and cannot get conveyance from there on." 

We only refer to a few facts, to try to illustrate in part how this meas- 
ure will operate in practice. As you advanced, the people north of this 
fell back ; and before your arrival here, a large portion of the people had 
retired south, so that the country south of this is already crowded, and 
without houses enough to accommodate the people, and we are informed 
that many are now staying in churches and other out-buildings. 

This being so, how is it possible for the people still here (mostly wom« 
en and children) to find any shelter ? And how can they live through the 


winter in the woods — no shelter or subsistence, in the midst of strangers 
who know them not, and without the power to assist them much, if they 
were willing to do so ? 

This is but a feeble picture of the consequences of this measure. You 
know the woe, the horrors, and the suffering, cannot be described by words ; 
imaginatioa can only conceive of it, and we ask you to take these things 
into consideration. 

We know your mind and time are constantly occupied with the duties of 
your command, which almost deters us from asking your attention to this 
matter, but thought it might be that you had not considered this sub- 
ject in all of its awful consequences, and that on more reflection you, we 
hope, would not make this people an exception to all mankind, for we 
know of no such instance ever having occurred — surely never in the United 
States — and what has this helpless people done, that they should be driven 
from their homes, to wander strangers and outcasts, and exiles, and to sub- 
nst on charity ? 

We do not know as yet the number of people still here ; of those who 
are here, we are satisfied a respectable number, if allowed to remain at 
home, could subsist for several months without assistance, and a respect- 
able number for a much longer time, and who might not need assistance at 
any time. 

In conclusion, we most earnestly and solemnly petition you to recon- 
sider this order, or modify it, and suffer this unfortunate people to remain 
at home, and e^joy what little means they have. 

Respectfully submitted : 

James M. OALnox:rN, Mayor, 

E. E. Rawson, Councilman, 

S. C. Wells, CoMncilman, 

Hjcad^uabtebs Militabt Division or tite Mibsissippi, ) 
nr TBI Field, Atlanta, Geoboia, September 12, 1864. ) 

Jaicxb M. Calhoxtn, Mayor, E. E. Ra'wson and 8. 0. Wells, represent' 
ing City Council of Atlanta, 
Gkntlemkn: I have your letter of the 11th, in the nature of a petition 
to revoke my orders removing all the inhabitants from Atlanta. I have 
read it careftilly, and give fuU credit to your statements of the distress 
that will be occasioned, and yet shall not revoke my orders, because they 
were not designed to meet the humanities of the cose, but to prepare for 
the future struggles in which millions of good people outside of Atlanta 
have a deep interest. We must have peace, not only at Atlanta, but in all 
America. To secure this, we must stop the war that now desolates our 
onoe happy and favored country. To stop war, we must defeat the rebel 
armiea wlich are arrayed against the laws and Constitution that all must 


respect and obey. To defeat those armies, we mnst prepare the way to 
reach them in their recesses, provided with the arms and instmments which 
enable us to accomplish onr purpose. Now, I know the vindictive na- 
ture of our enemy, that we may have many years of military operationa 
from this quarter ; and, therefore, deem it wise and prudent to prepare in 
time. The use of Atlanta for warlike purposes is inconsistent with its 
character as a home for families. There will be no manofactures, com- 
merce, or agriculttire here, for the maintenance of fiunilies, and sooner or 
later want will compel the inhabitants to go. Why not go now, when all 
the arrangements are completed for the transfer, instead of waiting till 
the plunging shot of contending armies will renew the scenes of the past 
month ? Of course, I do not apprehend any such thing at this moment, but 
you do not suppose this army will be here until the war is over. I cannot 
discuss this subject with you fairly, because I cannot impart to yon what we 
propose to do, but I assert that our military plans make it necessary for 
the inhabitants to go away, and I can only renew my offer of services to 
make their exodus in any direction as easy and comfortable as possible. 

Tou cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I wilL War is cruelty, 
and you cannot refine it ; and those who brought war into our country de- 
\ serve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out. I know I had 
no hand in making this war, and I know I will make more sacrifices to-day 
than any of you to secure peace. But you cannot have peace and a divi^on 
of our country. If the United States submits to a division now, it will not 
stop, but will go on until we reap the fate of Mexico, which is eternal war. 
Tlie United States does and must assert its authority, wherever it once had 
power ; for, if it relaxes one bit to pressure, it is gone, and I believe that 
such is the national feeling. This feeling assumes various shapes, but always 
comes back to tliat of Union. Once admit the Union, once more acknowl- 
edge the authority of the national Government, and, instead of devoting 
your houses and streets and roads to the dread uses of war, I and this 
army become at once your protectors and supporters, shielding you from 
danger, let it come from what quarter it may. I know that a few individu- 
als cannot resist a torrent of error and passion, such as swept the South 
into rebellion, but you can point out, so that we may know those who desire 
a government., and those who insist on war and its desolation. 

You might as well appeal against the thunder-storm as against these 
terrible hardships of war. They are inevitable, and the only way the peo- 
ple of Atlanta can hope once more to live in peace and quiet at home, is to 
stop the war, which can only be done by admitting that it began in error 
and is perpetuated in pride. 

We don't want your negroes, or your horses, or your houses, or your 
lands, or any thing you have, but we do want and will have a just obedi- 
ence to the laws of the United States. That we will have, and, if it in* 
Volvos the destruction of your improvements, we cannot help it. 


Ton have heretofore read pablic sentiment in yonr newspapers, that live 
b J falsehood and excitement ; and the quicker yon seek for tmth in other 
quarters, the better. I repeat then that, by the original compact of Gov- 
ernment, the United States had certain rights in Georgia, which have never 
been relinqnished and never will bo ; that the South began war by seizing 
forts, arsenals, mints, cnstom-honses, etc., etc., long before Mr. Lincoln was 
inatalled, and before the South had one jot or tittle of provocation. I 
myself have seen in Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Mississippi, hun- 
dreds and thousands of women and children fleeing from your armies and 
desperadoes, hungry and with blcedmg feet. In Memphis, Yicksburg, and 
IGssissippi, we fed thousands upon thousands of the families of rebel soldiers 
left on onr hands, and whom we could not see starve. Now that war comes 
home to yon, you feel very different. You deprecate Its horrors, but did not 
feel them when you sent car-loads of soldiers and ammunition, and moulded 
shells and shot, to carry war into Kentucky and Tennessee, to desolate the 
homes of hundreds and thousands of good people who only asked to live in 
peace at their old homes, and under the Government of their inheritance. 
Bat these comparisons are idle. I want peace, and believe it can only be 
reached through umon and war, and I will ever conduct war with a view 
to perfect and early success. 

But, my dear surs, when peace does come, you may call on me for any 
tlung. Then will I share with you the last cracker, and watch with you 
to shield your homes and families against danger from every quarter. 

Now yon must go, and take with you the old and feeble, feed and nurse 
them, and build for them, in more quiet places, proper habitations to shield 
them against the weather until the mad passions of men cool down, and 
allow the Union and peace once more to settle over your old homes at At- 
lanta. Tours in haste, 

W. T. Shebmax, Major- General commanding, 


rs TEE Fi£LD, Atlanta, Qboboia, Septembtr 14, 186^ ) 

General J. B. IIood, commanding Army of the Tennessee, Confederate 

GsNSSAL : Tours of September 12th is received, and has been carefully 
perused. I agree with you that this discussion by two soldiers is out of 
place, and profitless ; but you must admit tbat y6u began the controversy 
by characterizing an official act of mine in unfair and improper terms. I 
reiterate my former answer, and to the only new matter contained in your 
r^oinder add: We have no *' negro allies " in this army ; not a single negro 
soldier left Ohattanooga with this army, or is with it now. There are a 
few guarding Chattanooga, which General Steedman sent at one time to 
drive Wheeler oat of Dalton. 


I was not bound hj the laws of war to give notice of the shelling of 
Atlanta, a "fortified town, with magazines, arsenals, foonderies, and pablio 
stores ; " yon were bound to take notice. See the books. 

This is the conclusion of qnr correspondence, which I did not begiOf 
and terminate with satisfaction. I am, with respect, jour obedient servant, 

W. T. SnxBMAN, Major- General commanding, 

Headquabtkbs or the Abxt, ) 
WASHiKOTOir, S^UmUr S8, 1SS4, f 

Major- General Shekmax, Atlanta^ Georfia, 

General : Your communications of the 20th in regard to the removal of 
families from Atlanta, and the exchange of prisoners, and also the official 
report of your campaign, are just received. I have not had time as yet to 
eiuunine your report. The course which yon have pnrsned in removing rebel 
families from Atlanta, and in the exchange of prisoners, is folly approved by 
the War Department. Not only are yon justified by the laws and usages of 
war in removing those people, but I think it was your duty to joor own 
army to do so. Moreover, I am fully of opinion that the natnre of your 
position, the character of the war, the conduct of the enemy (and especially 
of non-combatants and women of the territory which we have heretofore 
conquered and occupied), will justify you in gathering np all the forage and 
provisions which your army may require, both for a siege of Atlanta and 
for your supply in your march farther into the enemy^s country. Let the 
disloyal families of the country, thus stripped, go to their husbands, fathers, 
and natural protectors, in the rebel ranks ; we have tried three years of con- 
ciliation and kindness without any reciprocation; on the contrary, those 
thus treated have acted as spies and guerrillas in our rear and within our 
lines. The safety of our armies, and a proper regard for the lives of our 
soldiers, require that we apply to our inexorable foes the severe rules of 
war. We certainly are not required to treat the so-called non-combatant 
rebels better than they themselves treat each other. Even here in Yir^nia, 
within fifty miles of Washington, they strip their own families of provisions, 
leaving them, as our army advances, to be fed by us, or to starve within 
our lines. We have fed this class of people long enough. Let them go with 
their husbands and fathers in the rebel ranks; and if they won't go, we must 
send them to their friends and natural protectors. I would destroy every 
mill and factory within reach which I did not want for my own use. This 
the rebels have done, not only in Maryland and Pennsylvania, but also in 
Virginia and other rebel States, wben compelled to fall back before our 
armies. In many sections of the country they have not left a mill to grind 
grain for their own sufToring families, lest we might use them to supply onr 
armies. We must do the same. 

I have endeavored to impress these views upon our commanders for the 


last two jean. Yon are almost the only one who has properly applied 
them. I do not approve of General Hunter's course in burning private 
booses or uselessly destroying private property. That is barbarous. But 
I approve of taking or destroying whatever may serve as supplies to us or 
to the enemy's army. 

Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

n. W. Halleoe, Major- General, Chief of Staff. 

In order to effect the exchange of prisoners, to facilitate the 
exodus of the people of Atlanta, and to keep open communication 
with the South, we established a neutral camp, at and about the 
lailroad-fitatioii next south of Atlanta, known as ^^ Eough and 
Beady/' to which point I dispatched Lieutenant-Colonel Wil- 
lard Warner, of my staff, with a guard of one hundred <nen, 
and General Hood sent Colonel Clare, of his staff, with a simi- 
lar goard; these officers and men harmonized perfectly, and 
parted good friends when their work was done. In the mean 
time I also had reconnoitred the entire rebel lines about At- 
lanta, which were well built, but were entirely too extensive to 
be held by a single corps or division of troops, so I instructed 
Colonel Poe, United States Engineers, on my staff, to lay off 
an inner and shorter line, susceptible of defense by a smaller gar- 

By the middle of September all these matters were in 
progrees, the reports of the past campaign were written up and 
dispatched to Washington, and our thoughts began to turn 
toward the future. Admiral Farragut had boldly and success- 
folly run the forts at the entrance to Mobile Bay, which re- 
sulted in the capture of Fort Morgan, so that General Canby 
was enabled to begin his regular operations against Mobile City, 
with a yiew to open the Alabama Kiver to navigation. My 
first thoughts were to concert operations with him, either by 
way of Montgomery, Alabama, or by the Appalachicola ; but so 
long a line, to be used as a base for further operations eastward, 
was not advisable, and I concluded to aw^t the initiative of the 
enemy, supposmg that he would be forced to resort to somo 
desperate campaign by the clamor raised at the South on account 
of the great loss to them of the city of Atlanta. 



General Thomas occapied a house on Marietta Street, which 
had a veranda with high pillars. We were sitting there one 
evening, talking about things generally, when Gteneral Thomas 
asked leave to send his trains back to Chattanooga, for the con- 
venience and economy of forage. I inqoired of him if he sup- 
posed we would be allowed much rest at Atknta, and he said 
lie thought we would, or that at all events it would not be pru- 
dent for us to go much farther into Georgia because of our al- 
ready long line of communication, viz., three hundred miles 
from Nashville. This was true ; but there we were, and we 
could not afford to remain on the defensive, simply holding 
Atlanta and fighting for the safety of its railroad. I insuBted 
on his retaining all trains, and on keeping all his divisions ready 
to move at a moment's warning. All the army, ofSoers and 
men, seemed to relax more or less, and rink into a condition 
of idleness. General Schofield was permitted to go to Ejiox- 
ville, to look after matters in his Department of the Ohio ; and 
Generals Blair and Logan went home to look after politics. 
Many of the regiments were entitled to, and claimed, their dis- 
charge, by reason of the expiration of their term of seiTioe ; 
so that with victory and success came also many causes of dis- 

The rebel General TVTieeler was still in Middle Tennes- 
see, threatening our railroads, and rumors came that Forrest 
was on his way from Mississippi to the same theatre, for 
the avowed purpose of breaking up our railroads and compel- 
ling us to fall back from our conquest. To prepare for this, 
or any other emergency, I ordered Newton's division of the 
Fourth Corps back to Chattanooga, and Corse's division of the 
Seventeenth Corps to Eome, and instructed General Boussean 
at Nashville, Granger at Decatur, and Steadman at Chatta- 
nooga, to adopt the most active measures to protect and insure 
the safety of our roads. 

Hood still remained about Lovejoy's Station, and, up to the 
15th of September, had given no signs of his future plans ; so 
that with this date I dose the campaign of Atlanta, with the 
following review of our relative losses during the months of 




AuguBt and September, with a summary of those for the whole 
campaign, b^inning May 6 and ending September 15, 1864. 
The losses for Angost and September are added together, so as 
to indude those abont Jonesboro' : 



KnUd and lOuhifi 



Fonrfh (SluileT) 







FoortMQth (DATla, Piiim«r) 


Twwitleih (WUttamai BkKnun) 








Kai«d nd MlMlBf; 









^tTrf*"*^ lDOu(N% .......■••.........• 



\ y ••.■..••••••■•■•. • 







KUkd and mulafi 



Twntif-tbM (Cox) 

Omhj (Ottnrd, iCcCook, KUpatriek).. 








Gand AMONnte.... ...•• 




^va^iHB ^'•V*^"*^* ••••••••••■•••••• 

*»-ww J . 1 

Hood's losses, as reported for the same period, page 677, 
Johnston's ^^ Karrative : " 
















To which should be added : 


132 CAPTURE OF ATLANTA. [1864 — 

Prisoners oaptored by us 8,788 

Giving his total loss 7,448 

On recapitulating the entire losses of each army during th^ 
entire campaign, from May to September, inclusive, we haye, ii^ 
the Union army, as per table appended : 

Killed 4,428 

Wounded 23,822 

Missing 4,442 

Aggregate loss 81,687 

In the Southern army, according to the reports of Soigeon 
Foard (pp. 576, 577, Johnston's " Narrative ") : 

Killed (Johnston) 1,221 

" (Hood) 1,828 

Total killed 8,044 

Wounded (Johnston) 8,229 

" (Hood) 10,728 

Total killed and wounded. 21,996 

Add prisoners captured by us, and officially reported 

at the time {see table) 12,983 

Aggregate loss to Southern army 84,979 

The foregoing figures are official, and are very nearly cor- 
rect. I see no room for error save in the cavalry, which was 
very much scattered, and whose reports are much less reliable 
than of the infantry and artillery; but as Surgeon Foard's 
tables do not embrace Wheeler's, Jackson's, and Martin's divi- 
sions of cavalry, I infer that the comparison, as to cavalry losses, 
is a " stand-off." 

I have no doubt that the Southern officers flattered them- 
selves that they had killed and crippled of us two and even six 
to one, as stated by Johnston ; but they were simply mistaken, 
and I herewith submit official tabular statements made up from 
the archives of the "War Department, in proof thereof: 




[1864 — 


ur TBS Field, Atlaitta, QmoamA^ S gi i t mb m' 16, 1864. 

Priionen and Deserters taken hy '* Army in the FUld^^^ Military Ditinon 
of the Ilimiiippi^ dwring May, June, July, and Auyuet, 1864. 









Annj of tiie Cnmberland. 

Armj of the TennoMee. 

Army of the Ohio.. . , 















To which add the prisoners and deserters taken bj the 

Army of the Onmberland, September 1st to 20th. . 8,065 

Making aggregate 12,988 

Reports from armies of the Tennessee and Ohio include the whole 

campaign, to September 15, 1864. 

W. T. Shebmak, 

Majer-Oeneral United States Army eommemding. 

I have also had a careful tabulai statement compiled from 
official records in the adjutant-general's office, giving the " ef- 
fective strength " of the army under my command for each 
of the months of May, June, July, August, and September, 
1864, which enumerate every man (infantry, artillery, and 
cavab-y) for duty. The recapitulation clearly exhibits the actual 
truth, "We opened the campaign with 98,797 (ninety-eight 
thousand seven hundred and ninety-seven) men. Blair's two 
divisions joined us early in June, giving 112,819 (one hun- 
dred and twelve thousand eight hundred and nineteen), which 
number gradually became reduced to 106,070 (one hundred and 
six thousand and seventy men), 91,675 (ninety-one thousand six 
hundred and seventy-five), and 81,758 (eighty-one thousand 
seven hundred and fifty-eight) at the end of the campaign. 
This gradual reduction was not altogether owing to death and 
wounds, but to the expiration of service, or by detachments 
sent to points at the rear. 





™.-™ 1 l=S|||j3SS 
-■-"-° I'Sis^lg'iiTiss- 









ill ittliHIU 

•511 J SSI i t.-fiS 

III i ill i liiil 

















Bt the middle of September, matters and things had settled 
^own in Atlanta, so that we felt perfectly at home. The telegraph 
^Hd ndlroads were repaired, and we had uninterrupted commu- 
tiication to the rear. The trains arrived with regularity and 
dispatch, and brought us ample supplies. General Wheeler had 
leen driven out of Middle Tennessee, escaping south across the 
Tennessee Biver at Bainbridge ; and things looked as though 
we were to have a period of repose. 

One day, two citizens, Messrs. Hill and Kelson, came into 
our lines at Decatur, and were sent to my headquarters. They 
represented themselves as former members of Congress, and 
particular friends of my brother John Sherman ; that Mr. Hill 
had a son killed in the rebel army as it fell back before us some- 
where near Cassville, and they wanted to obtain the body, 
having learned from a comrade where it was buried. I gave 
them i)ermission to go by rail to the rear, with a note to the 
commanding officer, General John E. Smith, at Cartersville, 
requiring him to furnish them an escort and an ambulance for 
the purpose. I invited them to take dinner with our mess, and 
we naturally ran into a general conversation about politics and 
the devastation and ruin caused by the war. They had seen a 
part of the country over which the army had passed, and could 
easOy apply its measure of desolation to the remainder of the 
Btate^ if necessity shoxdd compel ns to go ahead. 

Mr. Hill resided at Madison, on the main road to Au« 

138 ATLANTA AND AFTER. [1864. 

gasta, and seemed to realize f ullj the danger ; said that further 
resistance on the part of the Sonth was madness, that he hoped 
Governor Brown, of Greorgia, would so prodaun it, and with- 
draw his people from the rebellion, in pnrsnance of what was 
known as the policy of ^^ separate State action.^' I told him, 
if he saw Governor Brown, to describe to him fully what he 
had seen, and to say that if he remained inert, I would be com- 
pelled to go ahead, devastating the State in its whole length and 
breadth; that there was no adequate force to stop us, etc. ; but 
if he would issue his proclamation withdrawing his State troops 
from the armies of the Confederacy, I would spare the State, 
and in our passage across it confine tiie troops to the main roads, 
and would, moreover, pay for all the com and food we needed. 
I also told Mr. Hill that he might, in my name, invite Gh>vemor 
Brown to visit Atlanta ; that I would give him a saf ^aaid, 
and that if he wanted to make a speech, I would guarantee 
him as full and respectable an audience as any he had ever 
spoken to. I believe that Mr. EQll, after reaching his home at 
Madison, went to Milledgeville, the capital of the State, and 
delivered the message to Governor Brown. I had also sent 
similar messages by Judge "Wright of Rome, Gteorgia, and by 
Mr. King, of Marietta. On the 15th of September I tele- 
graphed to General Halleck as follows : 

M7 report is done, and will be forwarded as soon as I get in a few more 
of the subordinate reports. I am awaiting a courier from General Grant. 
All well ; the troops are in good, healthy camps, and supplies are coming 
forward finelj. Governor Brown has disbanded his militia, to gather the 
com and sorghum of the State. I have reason to believe that be and 
Stephens want to visit me, and have sent them a hearty invitation. I will 
exchange two thousand prisoners with Hood, but no more. 

Governor Brown's action at that time is fully explained by 
the following letter, since made public, which was then only 
known to ujs in part by hearsay : 

' Exiounvs DKPABTicExrr, I 

MiLLSDOBviLLK, GxoBQiA, S^pimnbtr 10, 1864. ) 

General J. B. Hood, commanding Army of Tennessee. 

Genebal : As the militia of the State were called out for the defense of 

1864.] ATLANTA AND AFTER. 139 

Atlanta daring the campaign against it» which has terminated bj the fall 
of the dtj into the hands of the enemj, and as many of these left their 
homes without preparation (expecting to be gone but a few weeks), who 
bare remained in service over three months (most of the tiipe in the 
trenches), Justice requires that they be permitted, while the enomj are pre- 
paring for the winter campaign, to return to their homes, and look for a 
time after important interests, and prepare themselves for such service as 
maj be required when another campaign commences against other impor- 
tant p<nnts in the State. I therefore hereby withdraw said organization 
from jour command. . . . Joseph 0. Bbown. 

This militia had composed a division imder command of 
Major-Greneral Ghistavos W. Smith, and were thus dispersed to 
thdr homes, to gather the com and sorghum, then ripe and 
ready for the harvesters. 

On the 17th I received by telegraph from President Lincoln 
this dispatch : 

WASHnroToir, D. C, SepUmber 17, 1864—10 ▲. k. 
JfoffT'Oeneral Shebm aw ; 

I feel great interest in the subjects of your dispatch, mentioning com and 
•orghum, and the contemplated visit to you. 

A. Lmoour, President of the United States. 

I replied at once : 


or THB FsLD, Atlauta, Geoboia, September 17, 1864. ) 
J'tuidsnt Lnroour, Washington^ D* C. : 

I will keep the department fully advised of all developments connected 
with the iubjeot in which you feel interested. 

ICr. Wright, former member of Congress from Rome, Georgia, and 
Ifir. King^ of Marietta, are now going between Governor Brown and myself. 
I have said to them that some of the people of Georgia are engaged Id 
rebellion, begun in error and perpetuated in pride, but that Georgia can 
now Mve herself from the devastations of war preparing for her, only by 
withdrawing her quota out of the Confederate Army, and aiding me to 
expel Hood from the borders of the State ; in which event, instead of deso- 
lating the land as we progress, I will keep our men to the high-roads and 
oommona, and pay for the com and meat we need and take. 

I am frilly conscious of the delicate nature of such assertions, but it 
woold be a magnificent stroke of policy if we could, without surrendering 
prindple or a foot of ground, arouse the latent enmity of Gtoorc^a against 


The people do not hesitate to saj that Mr. Stephens was and is a TJmoii 
man at heart ; and the j say that Davis will not trust him or let him have 
a share in his Government W. T. Bbesmas^ Mqfor-GenaraL 

I have not the least doubt that Governor Brown, at that 
time, eerionsly entertained the proposition ; but he hardly felt 
ready to act, and simply gave a furlough to the inilitia, and 
called a special session of the Legislature, to meet at Milledge- 
ville, to take into consideration the critical condition of affairs 
in the State. 

On the 20th of September Colonel Horace Porter arrived 
from General Grant, at City Point, bringing me the letter of Sep- 
tember 12th, asking my general views as to what should next be 
done. He staid several days at Atlanta, and on his return car- 
ried back to Washington my full reports of the past campaigUi 
and my letter of September 20th to General Grant in answer to 
his of the 12th. 

About this time we detected signs of activity on the part of 
the enemy. On the 21st Hood shifted his army across from 
the Macon road, at Lovejoy's, to the West Point road, at Pal- 
metto Station, and his cavalry appeared on the west side of the 
Chattahoochee, toward Powder Springs ; thus, as it were, step- 
ping aside, and opening wide the door for us to enter Central 
Georgia. I inferred, however, that his real purpose was to 
assume the oUcnsive against our railroads, and on the 21th a 
heavy force of cavalry from Mississippi, under General Forrest, 
made its appearance at Athens, Alabama, and captured its gar- 

General Newton's division (of the Fourth Corps), and Corse's 
(of the Seventeenth), were sent back by rail, the former to 
Chattanooga, and the latter to Kome. On the 25th I telegraphed 
to General Halleck : 

Hood seems to be moving, as it vrere, to the Alabama line, leaving opw 
the road to Macon, as also to Angnsta ; but his oavolrj is busy on all our 
roads. A force, nnmber estimated as high as eight thousand, are reported 
to have captured Athens, Alabama ; and a re^ment of three hundred and 
fiftj men sent to its relief. I have sent Newton's division up to Ohattanooga 


inean^ and ynSl send another division to Rome. If I were sure that Savan* 
Bih vonld soon be in onr possession, I should, be tempted to march for 
HHIedgeYille and Angnsta ; bat I must first secnre what I have. Jeff. Davis 
ii at Macon, W.T.&bxbmaix, Major- General. 

On the next daj I telegraphed further that Jeff. Davis was 
with Hood at Palmetto Station. One of our spies was there 
at the tdmei who came in the next night, and reported to me the 
substance of his speech to the soldiers. It was a repetition of 
those lie had made at Columbia, South Carolina, and Macon, 
Geoigia, on his way out, which I had seen in the newspapers. 
Davis seemed to be perfectly upset by the fall of Atlanta, and 
to have lost aU sense and reason. He denounced General Jos. 
Johnston and Governor Brown as little better than traitors ; at- 
tiibnted to them personally the many misfortunes which had 
befallen their cause, and informed the soldiers that now the 
tables were to be turned ; that General Forrest was already on 
our roads in Middle Tennessee ; and that Hood's army would 
Boon be there. He asserted that the Yankee army would have 
to retreat or starve, and that the retreat would prove more dis- 
astrous than was that of Kapoleon from Moscow. He promised 
his Tennessee and Kentucky soldiers that their feet should soon 
tread their ^^ native soil,'' etc., etc. He made no concealment 
of these vainglorious boasts, and thus gave us the full key to 
his future designs. To be forewarned was to be forearmed, 
and I think we took full advantage of the occasion. 

On the 26th I received this dispatch : 


Cirr Fonrr, VmonnA, September 26, 1864—10 ▲. k. 
Ma^or-Oeneral Bhebmait, Atlanta: 

It wiU be better to drive Forrest out of Middle Tennessee as a first step, 
and do anj thing else you maj feel your force safficient for. When a move- 
mant is made on anj part of the sea-coast, I will advise 70a. If Hood goes 
to the Alabama line, will it not be impossible for him to subsist his armj ? 

U. S. Grant, Lieutenant- General, 



ur TBM FuLD, Atlahta, Geoboia, September 26, 1864. ) 

Gshsbal: I have yonr dispatch of to-day. I have already sent one 
Aflikm (Newton*B) to Ohattanooga, and another (Oorse's) to Rome. 


Oar armies are mnoli reduced, and if I send back anj more^ I will nol 
be able to threaten Georgia mach. There are men enough to the rear to 
whip Forrest, but thej are necessarily scattered to defend the roada. 

Can 70a expedite the sending to Nashville of the recmita that are in 
Indiana and Ohio? Thoj conld occnpy the forts. 

Hood is now on the West Point road, twentj-fonr miles sonth of this, 
and draws his supplies by that road. Jefferson Davis is there to-ds^, and 
superhuman efforts will be made to break mj road. 

Forrest is now lieutenant-general, and commands all the enemy^s cav- 
alry. W. T. Shebmait, Mafor-OeneraL 

General Grant first thought I was in error in supposing that 
Jeff. Davis was at Macon and Palmetto, but on the 27th I re- 
ceived a printed copy of his speech made at Macon on the 22d, 
which was so significant that I ordered it to be telegraphed 
entire as far as Louisville, to be sent thence by mail to Wash- 
ington, and on the same day received this dispatch : 

W^SHmoTOK, D. C, Sepitmhtr 27, 1864-— 9 ▲• x. 
Major- General SnsBMAsr, Atlanta: 

Yon say Jeff. Davis is on a visit to General Hood. I Judge that Brown 
and Stephens are the objects of his visit. 

A. LiNooLK, President <(f the United States. 

To which I replied : 


ur THB FucLD, Atlaxta, Geobgll, September 2S, 186L ) 
President Lincoln, Washington^ D, C, : 

I have positive knowledge that Mr. Davis made a speech at Maoon, on 
the 22d, which I mailed to General Halleok yesterdaj. It was bitter against 
General Jos. Johnston and Governor Brown. The militia are on forlongh. 
Brown is at Milledgeville, trying to get a Legislatore to meet next month, 
hot he is afraid to act unless in concert with other Governors. Jndge 
Wright, of Home, has been here, and Messrs. Hill and Nelson, former mem- 
bers of Oongross, are hero now, and will go to meet Wright at Rome^ and 
then go back to Madison and Milledgeville. 

Great efforts are being made to reinforce Hood's army, and to break np 
my railroads, and I should have at once a good reserve force at Nashvillo. 
It would have a bad effect, if I were forced to send back any considerable 
part of my army to guard roads, so as to weaken me to an extent that I 
could not act offensively if the occasion calls for it. 

W. T. Shsbican, Major- General 


All this time Hood and I were carrying on the foregoing cor- 
respondence relating to the exchange of prisoners, the removal 
of the people from Atlanta, and the relief of our prisoners of 
■war at Andersonville. Notwithstanding the severity of their 
imprisonment, some of these men escaped from Andersonville, 
and got V> me at Atlanta. They described their sad condition : 
more than twenty-five thousand prisoners confined in a stockade 
designed for only ten thousand; debarred the privilege of 
gathering wood out of which to make huts ; deprived of suffi- 
cient healthy food, and the little stream that ran through their 
prLson-pen poisoned and polluted by the offal from their cooking 
and butchering houses above. On the 22d of September I wrote 
to G^eral Hood, describing the condition of our men at An- 
dersonville, purposely refraining from casting odium on him or 
his aflsodates for the treatment of these men, but asking his 
oansent for me to procure from our generous friends at the 
North the articles of clothing and comfort which they wanted, 
viz., under-olothing, soap, combs, scissors, etc. — ^all needed to 
keep them in health — ^and to send these stores with a train, and 
an officer to issue them. General Hood, on the 24th, promptly 
consented, and I telegraphed to my friend Mr. James E. Yeat- 
man, Vice-President of the Sanitary Commission at St. Louis, 
to send us all the under-dothing and soap he could spare, speci- 
fying twelve hundred fine-tooth combs, and four hundred pairs 
of shears to cut hair. These articles indicate the plague that 
most afflicted our prisoners at Andersonville. 

Mr. Yeatman promptly responded to my request, expressed 
the articles, but they did not reach Andersonville in time, for 
the prisoners were soon after removed; these supplies did, 
however, finally overtake them at Jacksonville, Florida, just 
before the war closed. 

On the 28th I received from General Grant two dispatches : 

CiTT Poisi, ViBonoA, S^temher 27, 1864—8.30 a. x. 

M^ar^eMral Bexbmas : 

It is evident, from the tone of the Richmond press and from other 
of information, that the enemy intend making a desperate effort to 

144 ATLANTA AND AFTER. [1864^ 

drive 70a from where 70a are. I have directed all new troops from tha 
West, and from the East too, if necessary, in case none are readj in the 
West, to be sent to 70a. If G^eral Borbridge is not too far on his way to 
Abingdon, I think he had better be recalled and his snrplna troops sen^ 
into Tennessee. U. 6. Graut, Lieutenant^ General, 

Cm PonfT, ViBGDnAf S^pUmh^t 2T, ISSi-— 10.80 ▲. k. 

Major- General Shesman : 

I have directed all recraits and new troops from all the Western States 
to be sent to Nashville, to receive their farther orders fit>m jon. I was 
mistaken abont Jeff. Davis being in Richmond on Thursday last. He wai 
then on his way to Macon. U. S. Gbakt, Lieutenant- Cfeneral. 

Forrest having already made bis appearance in !Middle Ten- 
nessee, and Hood evidenUy edging o£E in that direction, satisfied 
me that the general movement against our roads had began. I 
therefore determined to send General Thomas back to Chatta- 
nooga, with another division (Morgan's, of the Fourteenth Corps), 
to meet the danger in Tennessee. General Thomas went np on 
the 29th, and Morgan's division followed the same day, also 
by rail. And I telegraphed to General Halleck : 

I take it for granted that Forrest will cnt oar road, bnt think we eaii 
prevent him from making a serious lodgment. His cavalry will travel s 
hundred miles where ours will ten. I have sent two divisions np to Chatta- 
nooga and one to Rome, and General Thomas started to-daj to drive Forrest 
out of Tennessee. Our roads should be watched from the rear, and 1 
am glad that General Grant has ordered reserves to Nashville. I pre- 
fer for the future to make the movement on Milledgeville, Hillen, and Sa- 
vannah. Hood now rests twentj-four miles south, on the Ohattahoochee, 
with his right on the West Point road. He is removing the iron of the 
Macon road. I can whip his infantry, but his cavalry is to be feared. 

There was great difficulty in obtaining correct information 
abont Hood's movements from Palmetto Station. I conld not 
get spies to penetrate his camps, but on the 1st of October I -^yas 
satisfied that the bulk of his infantry was at and across the 
Chattahoochee Eiver, near Campbellton, and that his cavalry 
was on the west side, at Powder Springs. On that day I tele- 
graphed to General Grant : 


Hood is evidently across the Ohattahoochee, below Sweetwater. If be 
tries to get on our road, this side of the Etowah, I shall attack him; 
Imtt if he goes to the Selma & Talladega road, why will it not do to 
leare Tennessee to the forces which Thomas has, and the reserves soon 
to come to Nashville, and for me to destroy Atlanta and march across 
Georgia to Savannah or Charleston, breaking roads and doing irreparable 
^age ? We cannot remain on the defensive. 

The Selma & Talladega road herein referred to was an un- 
finished railroad from Selma, Alabama, through TaUadega, to 
jBlne Mountain, a terminus sixty-five miles southwest of Home 
and about fifteen miles southeast of Gadsden, where the rebel . 
army could be supplied from the direction of Montgomery 
and Mobile, and from which point Hood could easily threaten 
IGddle Tennessee, My first impression was, that Hood would 
make for that point ; but by the 3d of October the indications 
were that he would strike our railroad nearer us, viz., about 
Kingston or Marietta. 

Orders were at once made for the Twentieth Corps (Slo- 
cmn's) to hold Atlanta and the bridges of the Chattahoochee, 
and the other corps were piit in motion for Marietta. 

The army had undergone many changes since the capture of 
Atlanta. General Schofield had gone to the rear, leaving Gen- 
eral J. D. Cox in command of the Army of the Ohio (Twenty- > 
third Corps). General Thomas, also, had been dispatched to 
Chattanooga, with Newton's division of the Fourth Corps and 
Morgan's of the Fourteenth Corps, leaving General D. S. 
Stanley, the senior major-general of the two corps of his Army 
of the Cumberland, remaining, and available for this move- 
ment, viz., the Fourth and Fourteenth, commanded by himself 
and Major-General Jeff. C. Davis ; and after General Dodge 
was wounded, his corps (the Sixteenth) had been broken up, and 
its two divisions were added to the Fifteenth and Seventeenth 
Corps, constituting the Army of the Tennessee, commanded by 
Hajor-General O. O. Howard. Generals Logan and Blair had 
gone home te assist in the political canvass, leaving their corps, 
viz., the Fifteenth and Seventeenth, under the command of 
Hajor-Gtenerals Osterhaus and T. £. G. Bansom. 


These five corps were Teiy much reduced in sfrengih, by de- 
tachments and bj discharges, bo that for the purpose of fighting 
Hood I had only about sixty thousand infantiy and artillery, 
with two small divisions of cavalry (Ejlpatrick's and Garrard's). 
General Elliott was the chief of cavalry to the Army of tlie 
Cumberland, and was the senior officer of that arm of service 
present for duty with me. 

We had strong railroad guards at Marietta and Kenesav, 
Allatoona, Etowah Bridge, Kingston, Borne, Besaca, DaltoB, 
Binggold, and Chattanooga. All the important bridges were 
likewise protected by good block-houses, admirably oongtrocted, 
and capable of a strong defense against cavalry or infantiy ; and 
at nearly aU the regular railroad-stations we had smaller detach- 
ments intrenched. I had little fear of the enemy's cavaliy 
damaging our roads seriously, for they rarely made a break 
which could not be repaired in a few days ; but it was absolutely 
necessary to keep General Hood's infantry ofi our main route ci 
communication and supply. Forrest had with liim in Middle 
Tennessee about eight thousand cavalry, and Hood's anny was 
estimated at from thirty-five to forty thousand men, infantry 
and artillery, including Wheeler's cavalry, then about three 
thousand strong. 

We crossed tlie Chattahoochee Biver during the 3d and 4th of 
October, rendezvoused at the old battle-field of Smyrna Camp, 
and the next day reached Marietta and Kenesaw, The tele- 
graph-wires had been cut above Marietta, and learning that 
heavy masses of infantry, artillery, and cavalry, had been seen 
from Kenesaw (marching north), I inferred that Allatoona was 
tlieir objective point; and on the 4:th of October I signaled 
irom Yining's Station to Kenesaw, and from Kenesaw to Alla- 
toona, over the heads of the enemy, a message for General Corse, 
at Bome, to hurry back to the assistance of the garrison at 
Allatoona. Allatoona was held by a small brigade, commanded 
by Lieutenant-Colonel Tourtellotte, my present aide-de-camp, 
lie had two small redoubts on either side of the railroad, over- 
looking the village of Allatoona, and the warehouses, in which 
were stored over a million rations of bread. 


Beaching Keneeaw Monntain about 8 a. m. of October 5th 
(a beaatiful day), I had a superb view of the vast panorama to the 
north and west. To the southwest, about Dallas, could be seen 
the smoke of camp-fires, indicating the presence of a large force 
of the enemy, and the whole line of railroad, from Big Shanty 
up to Allatoona (full fifteen miles) was marked by the fifes of 
the burning railroad. TVe could plainly see the smoke of battle 
about Allatoona, and hear the faint reverberation of the cannon. 

From Kenesaw I ordered the Twenty-third Corps (General 
Cox) to march due west on the Burnt Hickory road, and to 
bum houses or piles of brush as it progressed, to indicate the 
head of column, hoping to interpose this corps between Hood's 
main army at Dallas and the detachment then assailing AUatoo- 
lUL The rest of the army was directed straight for Allatoona, 
northwest, distant eighteen miles. The signal-officer on Kenesaw 
reported that since dayli^t he had failed to obtain any answer 
to his call for Allatoona ; but, while I was with him, he caught 
a faint glimpse of the tell-tale flag through an embrasure, and 
after much time he made out these letters — " C," " K.," " S.," 
«E^" "H.," "E.," "R," and translated the message— " Corse 
IB here.*' It was a source of great relief, for it gave me the first 
asBorance that General Corse had received his orders, and that 
the place was adequately garrisoned. 

I watched with painful suspense the indications of the battle 
raging there, and was dreadfully impatient at the slow progress 
of the relieving column, whose advance was marked by the 
amokea which were made according to orders, but about 2 p. m. 
I noticed with satisfaction that the smoke of battle about Alla- 
toona grew less and less, and ceased altogether about 4 p. h. 
For a time I attributed this result to the effect of General Cox's 
march, but later in the afternoon the signal-fiag announced the 
welcome tidings that the attack had been fairly repulsed, but 
that Gteneral Corse was wounded. The next day my aide. Colo- 
nel Dayton, received this characteristic dispatch : 

Aliatooita, Gsoboia, Odober 6, 1864^2 p. v. 

Oapiaki L. IL Dattott, Aida-de-Camp : 

I am short a oheek-bone and ad ear, but am able to whip all h — 1 yet ! 

148 ATLANTA AND AFTER. [186^^ 

Mj losses are very heavy. A force moving from Stilesboro' to Eingsto:^ 
gives me some anxiety. Tell me where Sherman ia. 

John M. Cobse, Brigadier^OensrdL 

Inasmucli as the enemy had retreated Bouthwest, and wonl* 
probably next appear at Ilome, I answered General Corse wiitB. 
orders to get back to Borne with bis troops as qnickly as possible* 

General Corse's report of this fight at Allatoona is veiy^ 
full and graphic. It is dated Eome, October 27, 1864 ; redtes 
the fact that he received his orders by signal to go to the assist- 
ance of Allatoona on the 4th, when he telegraphed to Kingston, 
for cars, and a train of thirty empty cars was started for him^ 
but about ten of them got off the track and caused delay. By 
7 p. M. he had at Borne a train of twenty cars, which he loaded 
up with Colonel Bowett's brigade, and part of the Twelfth SU- 
nois Infantry ; started at 8 p. m., reached Allatoona (distant 
thirty-five miles) at 1 a. m. of the 5thj and sent the train back 
for more men ; but the road was in bad order, and no more men 
came in time. He found Colonel Tourtellotte's garrison com- 
posed of eight hundred and ninety men ; his reenforcement was 
one thousand and fifty-four : total for the defense, nineteen hun- 
dred and forty-four. The outposts were already engaged, and 
as soon as daylight came he drew back the men from the vil- 
lage to the ridge on which the redoubts were built. 

The enemy was composed of French's division of three bri- 
gades, variously reported from four to five thousand strong. 
This force gradually surrounded the place by 8 a. m., when 
General French sent in by flag of truce this note : 

Abouio) Allatoona, OaUh0r 6, 1864 
Commanding Officer^ United States ForeeSy Allatoona: 

I Lave placed the forces under mj command in snch positions that jon 
are snrromided, and to avoid a needless effusion of blood I call on you to 
surrender your forces at once, and unconditionally. 

Five minutes will be allowed you to decide. Should you accede to thifl) 
you will be treated in the most honorable manner as prisoners of T^ar. 
I have the honor to be, very respectfully yours, 

S. G. Fbenoh, 
Major* General commanding forces Confederate States. 

1864.] ATLANTA AND AFTEB. 149 

General Corse answered immediately : 


Allatooka, Gsoboll, 8.80 ▲. h., October 5, 1864. ) 
^ojor-General S. G. Fbekoh, Cor^federaU States^ etc, : • 

Tour oonunimicatioii demanding surrender of mj command I acknowl- 
^ reoeipt of^ and respectftdly reply that we are prepared for the ^* need- 
kaiefftidon of blood*' whenever it is agreeable to yon. 
I am, very respecHnUy, your obedient servant, 

John M. Cobse, 
Brigadier- General commanding farces United States, 

Of course the attack began at once, coming from front, flank, 
and rear. There were two small redoubts, with slight parapets 
and ditches, one on each side of the deep raih*oad-cut. These 
redonbtB had been located by Colonel Poe, United States En- 
gineerSi at the time of our advance on Kenesaw, the previous 
June. Each redoubt overlooked the storehouses dose by the 
railroad, and each could aid the other defensively by catching in 
flank the attacking force of the other. Our troops at flrst en- 
deavored to hold some ground outside the redoubts, but were 
soon driven inside, when the enemy made repeated assaults, but 
were always driven back. About 11 a. m., Colonel Eedfield, of 
the Thirty-ninth Iowa, was killed, and Colonel Rowett was 
wounded, but never ceased to fight and encourage his men. Colo- 
nel TourteUotte was shot through the hips, but continued to 
command. General Corse was, at 1 p. m., shot across the face, 
the ball cutting his ear, which stunned him, but he continued to 
encourage his men and to give orders. The enemy (about 1.30 
p. X.) made a last and desperate effort to carry one of the re- 
doubts, but was badly cut to pieces by the artillery and infantry 
fire from the other, when he began to draw off, leaving his dead 
and wounded on the ground. 

Before finally withdrawing. General French converged a 
heavy fire of his cannon on the block-house at AUatoona Creek, 
about two miles from the depot, set it on fire, and captured its 
gairison, consisting of four ofiiccrs and eighty-five men. By 
4 p. ic he was in full retreat south, on the Dallas road, and got 
by before the head of General Cox's column had reached it ; 




Btill several ambulances and stragglers were picked up by to 
command on tliat road. General Corse reported two hundred 
and thirty-one rebel dead, four hundred and eleven prisoners, 
three regimental colors, and eight hundred muskets captured. 

Among the prisoners was a Brigadier-General Young, 'who 
thought that French's aggregate loss would reach two thousand. 
Colonel Tourtellotte says that, for days after General Corse bad 
returned to Eome, his men found and buried at least a hundred 
more dead rebels, who had doubtless been wounded, and died 
in the woods near Allatoona. I know that when I reached 
Allatoona, on the 9th, I saw a good many dead men, which had 
been collected for burial. 

Corse's entire loss, officially reported, was : 

















I esteemed this defense of Allatoona so handsome and im- 
portant, that I made it the subject of a general order, viz., Xo. 
86, of October 7, 1864 : 

The general commanding avails himself of the opportunity, in the 
handsome defense made of Allatoona, to illustrate the most important 
principle in war, that fortified posts shonld be defended to the last^ re- 
gardless of the relative numbers of the party attacking and attacked. . . . 
The thanks of this army are due and are hereby accorded to General Ck)r8c, 
Colonel Tourtellotte, Colonel Kowctt, officers, and men, for their deter- 
mined and gallant defense of Allatoona, and it is made an example to illus- 
trate the importance of preparing in time, and meeting the danger, when 
present, boldly, manfully, and well. 

Commanders and garrisons of the posts along our railroad ore hereby 
Instructed that they must hold their posts to the last minute, sure that the 
time gained is valuable and necessary to their comrades at the front. 

By order of Major-General W. T. Sherman, 

L. M. Datton, AidC'd&'Camp. 

The rebels had struck our railroad a heavy blow, burning 


every He, bending the rails for eight miles, from Big Shanty to 
above Acworth, so that the estimate for repairs called for thirty- 
five thousand new ties, and six miles of iron. Ten thousand 
men were distributed along the break to replace the ties, and to 
prepare the road-bed, while the regular repair-party, under Colonel 
W. W. Wright, came down from Chattanooga with iron, spikes, 
etc., and in about seven days the road was aU right again. It 
was by such acts of extraordinary energy that we discouraged 
our adversaries, for the rebel soldiers felt that it was a waste of 
Ubor for them to march hurriedly, on wide circuits, day and 
night, to bum a bridge and tear up a mile or so of track, when 
they knew that we could lay it back so quickly. They sup- 
posed that we had men and money without limit, and that we 
always kept on hand, distributed along the road, duplicates of 
every bridge and culvert of any importance. 

A good story is told of one who was on Kenesaw Mountain 
during our advance in the previous June or July. A group 
of rebels lay in the shade of a tree, one hot day, overlooking 
our camps about Big Shanty. One soldier remarked to his 

"Well, the Tanks will have to git up and git now, for I 
heard General Johnston himself say that General Wheeler had 
blown up the tv/nmsl near Dalton, and that the Yanks would 
have to retreat, because they could get no more rations." 

" Oh, hell I " said a listener, " don't you know that old Sher- 
man carries a duplicate tunnel along ? " 

After the war was over, Greneral Johnston inquired of me 
who was our chief railroad-engineer. When I told him that it 
was Ciolonel W. W. Wright, a civilian, he was much surprised, 
said that our feats of bridge-bmlding and repairs of roads had 
excited his admiration ; and he instanced the occasion at Kene- 
saw in June, when an officer from Wheeler's cavalry had 
reported to him in person that he had come from General 
Wheeler, who had made a bad break in our road about Tilton 
Station, which he said would take at least a fortnight to repair; 
and, while they were talking, a train was seen coming down the 
road, which had passed that very break, and had reached me at 

152 ATLANTA AliO) AFTER. [1864. 

Big Shanty as soon as the fleet horseman had reached him (Gea- 
eral Johnston) at Marietta ! 

I doubt whether the history of war can famish more exam- 
ples of skill and bravery than attended the defense of the rail- 
road from fTashvillo to Atlanta during the year 1864. 

In person I reached Allatoona on the 9th of October, still ixx 
doubt as to Hood's immediate intentions. Our cavalry could do 
little against his infantry in the rough and wooded country 
about Dallas, which masked the enemy's movements ; but Geu'- 
eral Corse, at Eome, with Spencer's First Alabama Gavalry and 
a mounted regiment of Illinois Infantry, could feel the country" 
south of Ilome about Cedartown and Yilla Kica ; and reported 
the enemy to be in force at both places. On the 9th I tele- 
graphed to General Thomas, at Nashville, as follows : 

I came op, here to relieve our road. The Twentieth Corps remainB at 
Atlanta. Ilood reached the road and broke It np between Big Shanty and 
Acworth. He attacked Allatoona, but was repobed. We have plenty of 
bread and meat, bnt forage is scarce. I want to destroy all the road below 
Chattanooga, including Atlanta, and to make for the sea-coast We cannot 
defend this long line of road. 

And on the same day I telegraphed to General Grant, at City 
Point : 

It will bo a physical impossibility to protect the roads, now that Hood, 
Forrest, Wheeler, and the whole batch of devils, are turned loose without 
home or habitation. I think Hood^s movements indicate a diversion to the 
end of the Selma & Talladega road, at Blue Mountain, about sixty miles 
southwest of Rome, from which he will tliroaten Kingston, Bridgeport, and 
Decatur, Alabama. I propose that wo break up the railroad from Chatta- 
nooga forward, and that we strike out with our wagons for MiUedgeville, 
Millen, and Savannah. Until we can repopulate Georgia, it is useless for 
ns to occupy it ; but the utter destruction of its roads, houses, and people, 
will cripple their military resources. By attempting to hold the roads, we 
will lose a thousand men each mouth, and will gain no result. I can make 
this march, and make Georgia howl I We have on hand over eight thousand 
head of cattle and three million rations of bread, but no com. We can find 
plenty of forage in the interior of the State. 

Meantime the rebel General Forrest liad made a bold circuit 
in Middle Tennessee, avoiding all fortified points, and breaking 


jxf the r&ilroad at several places ; but, as usual, he did his work 
60 hastily and carelessly that our engineers soon repaired the 
damage — ^then, retreating before General Bousseau, he left the 
State of Tennessee, crossing the river near Florence, Alabama, 
and got off unharmed. 

On the 10th of October the enemy appeared south of the 
£towah Kiver at Home, when I ordered all the armies to march 
to Kingston, rode myself to Oartersville with the Twenty-third 
Corps (General Cox), and telegraphed from there to General 
^omas at Nashville : 

It looks to me as though Hood was bound for Tuscnmbia. lie is now 
^^^Otting the Ooosa River below Rome, looking west. Let me know if yon 
^anhold him with your forces now in Tennessee and the expected re- 
^tiforoements^ as, in that event, yon know what I propose to do. 

I will be at Kingston to-morrow. I think Rome is strong enough to 
I'eiist any attack, and the rivers are all high. Khe turns up by Summer- 
>ille, I will get in behind him. 

And on the same day to General Grant, at City Point : 

Hood is now crossing the Ooosa, twelve miles below Rome, bound west. 
If he passes over to the Mobile & Ohio Railroad, had I not better execute 
the plan of my letter sent yon by Oolonel Porter, and leave General 
Thomas, with the troops now in Tennessee, to defend the State ? He will 
have an ample force when the reinforcements ordered reach Nashville. 

I found General John E. Smith at Oartersville, and on the 
llih rode on to Kingston, where I had telegraphic commnnica- 
tioDB in all directions. 

Prom General Corse, at Rome, I learned that Hood's army 
had disappeared, bnt in what direction he was still in doubt ; and 
I was so strongly convinced of the wisdom of my proposition to 
change the whole tactics of the campaign, to leave Hood to 
Gteneral Thomas, and to march across Georgia for Savannah or 
Charleston, that I again telegraphed to General Grant : 

We cannot now remain on the defensive. With twenty-five thousand 
iii&iitTj and the bold cavalry he has. Hood can constantly break my road. 
I would infinitely prefer to make a wreck of the road and of the country 


from Chattanooga to Atlanta, indnding the latter city ; send bSck all my 
womided and nnserviceable men, and with my effective army move through 
G^rgia, smashmg things to the sea. Hood may torn into Tennessee and 
Kentacky, but I believe he will be forced to follow me. Instead of being 
on the defensive, I will be on the offensive. Instead of my gnesdng at 
what he means to do, he will have to guess at my plans. The difference 
in war would be fully twenty-five per cent. I can make Savannah, Charles- 
ton, or the mouth of the Chattahoochee (Appalachicola). Answer quick, 
as I know we will not have the telegraph long. 

I received no answer to this at the time, and the next day 
went on to Borne, where the news came that Hood had made 
his appearance at Kesaca, and had demanded the surrender of 
the place, which was commanded by Colonel "Weaver, reenf orced 
by Brevet Brigadier-Gteneral Eamn. General Hood had evident- 
ly marched with rapidity up the Chattooga Valley, by Summer- 
ville, Lafayette, Ship's Cap, and Snake-Creek Gap, and had 
with him his whole army, except a small force left behind to 
watch Borne. I ordered Besaca to be further reenforced by rail 
from Kingston, and ordered General Corse to make a bold re- 
connoissance down the Coosa Valley, which captured and brought 
into Bome some cavalrymen and a couple of field-guns, with 
their horses and men. At first I thought of interposing my 
whole army in the Chattooga Valley, so as to prevent Hood's 
escape south ; but I saw at a glance that he did not mean to 
fight, and in that event, after damaging the road all he could, 
he would be likely to retreat eastward by Spring Place, which 
I did not want him to do ; and, hearing from General Baum 
that he still held Besaca safe, and that General Edward McCook 
had also got there with some cavalry reenforcements, I turned 
all the heads of columns for Besaca, viz.. General Cox's, from 
Bome ; General Stanley's, from McGuire's ; and General How- 
ard's, from Kingston. We all reached Besaca during that night, 
and the next morning (13th) learned that Hood's whole army 
had passed up the valley toward Dalton, burning the railroad 
and doing all the damage possible. 

On the 12th he had demanded the surrender of Besaca in 
the following letter : 

186i.] ATLANTA AKD AFTER. 155 


or THE FiXLD, Odobur 12, 1864. ) 

To ihs Officef commanding the United States Forced at Eeeaca, Qeargia, 

Sib: I demand the immediate and unconditional surrender of the post 
and garrison under your conmiand, and, should this be acceded to, all white 
offioers and soldiers will be paroUed in a few days. If the place is carried 
by assault, no prisoners wHl be taken. Most respectfully, your obedient 
servant,. J. B. Hood, General, 

To this Colonel TVeaver, then in command, replied : 


BxBACA, GioBOLL, October 12, 1864. ) 
To General J. B. Hood : 

Your conununication of this date just received. In reply, I have to 
state that I am somewhat surprised at the concluding paragraph, to the 
effect that, if the place is carried by assault, no prisoners will be taken. In 
my opinion I can hold this post. If you want it, come and take it. 

I am, general, very respectfully, your most obedient servant, 

Clabk R. Weaves, Commanding Officer. 

This brigade was very small, and as Hood's investment ex- 
tended only from the Oostenaula, below the town, to the Con- 
nesanga above, he left open the approach from the sonth, which 
enabled General Kanm and the cavalry of General Edward 
McCook to reenforce from Kingston. In fact, Hood, ad- 
monished by his losses at Allatoona, did not attempt an assault 
at all, but limited his attack to the above threat, and to some 
skirmishing, giving his attention chiefly to the destruction of 
the railroad, which he accomplished all the way up to Tunnel 
Hill, nearly twenty miles, capturing en route the regiment of 
black troops at Dalton (Johnson's Forty-fourth United States 
colored). On the 14th, I turned General Howard through 
Snake-Creek Gkip, and sent General Stanley around by Tilton, 
with orders to cross the mountain to the west, so as to capture, 
if possible, the force left by the enemy in Snake-Creek Gap. 
We found this gap veiy badly obstructed by fallen timber, but 
got through that night, and tiie next day the main army was at 
"Villanow. On the morning of the 16th, the leading division of 
General Howard's column, commanded by General Charles K. 


WoodSy carried Ship's Gap, taking prisoners part of the Twet 
tj-fonrth South Ca^lina Begiment, which had been left ther 
to hold us in check. 

The best information there obtained located Hood's army ^ 
Lafayette, near which place I hoped to catch him and force hiuc 
to battle ; but, by the time we had got enough troops across th^ 
mountain at Ship's Gap, Hood had escaped down the valley o:£ 
the Chattooga, and all we could do was to follow him as closely" 
as possible. From Ship's Gap I dispatched couriers to Chatta- 
nooga, and received word back that General Schofield was there, 
endeavoring to cooperate with me, but Hood had broken up tho 
telegraph, and thus had prevented quick communication. Gren- 
eral Schofield did not reach me till the army had got down to 
Gaylesville, about the 21st of October. 

It was at Ship's Gap that a courier brought me the cipher 
message from General Halleck which intimated that the au- 
thorities in Washington were willing I should tmdertake the 
march across Georgia to the sea. The translated dispatch 
named ^^ Horse-i-bar Sound '' as the poiut where the fleet would 
await my arrival. After, much time I construed it to mean, 
" Ossabaw Sound," below Savannah, which was correct. 

On the IGth I telegraphed to General Thomas, at Nashville: 

Send me ^forgan^s and Newton^s old divisions. Reestablish the road, 
and I will follow Uood wherever he may go. I think he will move to Bine 
Mountain. We can maintain our men and animals on the country. 

General Thomas's reply was : 

NAtaviLLE, Oetcher 17, 1894 — ^10.80 a. x. 
Major- General Sherman: 

Your dispatch from Ship's Gap, 5 p. m. of the 16th, just received. 
Schofield, whom I placed in command of the two divisions (Wagner^s and 
Morgan's), was to move up Lookout Valley this a. m., to intercept Hood, 
should he he marching for Bridgeport. I will order him to join jon with 
the two divisions, and will reconstruct the road as soon as possible. Will also 
reorganize the guards for posts and block-houses. . . . Mower and Wilson 
have arrived, and are on their waj to join you. I hope you will adopt Grant's 
idea of turning Wilson loose, rather than undertake the plan of a march 



with the whole force throng Georgia to the sea, inasmnch as General 
G(nnt cannot cooperate with jon as at first arrangecL 

Gbobos H. Thomas, Major- General, 

So it is clear that at that date neither General Grant nor 
GS-cneral Thomas heartily favored my proposed plan of cam- 
paign. On the same day, I wrote to General Schofield at Chat- 

Hood is not at Dear Head Oove. We occupy Ship's Gap and Lafayette. 

Bood is moving south tia Sommerville, Alpine, and Gadsden. If he enters 

Tennessee, it will be to the west of Hnntsyille, but I think he has ^ven up 

^ moh idea. I want the road repaired to Atlanta; the sick and wounded 

Consent north of the Tennessee; my armj recomposed; and I will then 

make the interior of C^rgia feel the weight of war. It is folly for us 

to be moTing our armies on the reports of scouts and citizens. We must 

^'^iJiitaJTi the offennve. Your first move on Trenton and Valley Head was 

ii(|^t-4he move to defend Gaperton's Ferry is wrong. Notify General 

Thomas of these my views. We must follow Hood till he is beyond the 

reach of mischief, and then resume the offensive. 

The correspondence between me and the authorities at Wash- 
ington, as well as with the several army commanders, given at 
length in the report of the Committee on the Conduct of the 
War, is f tdl on all these points. 

After striking our road at Dalton, Hood was compelled to 
go on to Chattanooga and Bridgeport, or to pass around by De- 
catur and abandon altogether his attempt to make us let go 
our hold of Atlanta by attacking our communications. It was 
dear to me that he had no intention to meet us in open battle, 
and the lightness and celerity of his army convinced me that I 
could not possibly catch him on a stem-chase. We therefore 
quietly followed him down the Chattooga Valley to the neigh- 
borhood of Gradsden, but halted the main armies near the Coosa 
Biver, at the mouth of the Chattooga, drawing our supplies of 
com and meat from the farms of that comparatively rich val- 
ley and of the neighborhood. 

Oenend Slocnm, in Atlanta, had likewise sent out, under 
itrong eaoort, large trains of wagons to the east, and brought 

158 ATLANTA AND AFTER. [1864. 

back com, bacon, and all kinds of provisions, so that Hood^s 
efforts to cut off our supplies only reacted on his own people. 
So long as the railroads were in good order, our supplies came 
full and regular from the North ; but when the enemj broke 
our railroads we were perfectly justified in stripping the inhab- 
itants of all they had. I remember well the appeal of a veiy 
respectable farmer against our men driving away his £ne 
flock of sheep. I explained to him that G^eral Hood had 
broken our railroad; that we were a strongs hungry crowd, 
and needed plenty of food ; that Unde Sam was deeply inte^ 
ested in our continued health and would soon repair these roadB, 
but meantime we must eat; we preferred Illinois beef, hut 
mutton would have to answer. Poor fellow 1 I don't believe he 
was convinced of the wisdom or wit of my explanation. Very 
soon after reaching Lafayette we organized a line of supply 
from Chattanooga to Einggold by rail, and thence by wagona 
to our camps about Gkiylesville. Meantime, also, Hood had 
reached the neighborhood of Gadsden, and drew his supplies 
from the railroad at Blue Mountain. 

On the 19th of October I telegraphed to General H^Ilec^ at 
TVashington : 

Uood has retreated rapidly hj all the roads leading sonth. Our advanoe 
colamns are now at Alpine and Melville Post-Office. I shall pursue him as 
far as Gaylesville. The enemy will not venture toward Tennessee except 
around by Decatur. I propose to send the Fourth Oorps bock to General 
Thomas, and leave him, with that corps, the garrisons, and new troops, to 
defend the line of the Tennessee River; and with the rest I will push into 
the heart of Georgia and come out at Savannah, destroying all the rail- 
roads of the State. The break in our railroad at Big Shanty is almost 
repaired, and that about Dalton should be done in ten days. We find 
abundance of forage in the country. 

On the same day I telegraphed to General L. C. Easton, 
chicf-quartcrmaster, who had been absent on a visit to Missonri, 
but had got back to Chattanooga : 

Go in person to superintend the repairs of the railroad, and make all 
orders in my name that will expedite its completion. I want it finished, to 
bring back fh)m Atlanta to Chattanooga the sick and wounded men and 

1864.] ATLAJ^TA AND AFTER. 159 

surplus stores. Oii the 1st of Noyember I want nothing in front of Ohat- 
tanooga except what we can use as food and clothing and haul in oor wagons. 
There is plenty of com in the country, and we only want forage for the 
posts. I allow ten days for all this to be done, by which time I expect to 
be at or near Atlanta. 

I telegraphed also to General Amos Beckwith, cliief-commis- 
aary in Atlanta, who was acting as chief -quartermaster during 
the absence of General Easton : 

Hood will escape me. I want to prepare for my big raid. On the 1st 
of November I want nothing in Atlanta bat what is necessary for war. 
Send all trash to the rear at once, and have on hand thirty days* food and 
but little forage. I propose to abandon Atlanta, and the railroad back to 
Ohattanooga, to sally forth to min Georgia and bring up on the sea- 
■hore. Make all dispositions accordingly. I will go down the Coosa nntil 
I am Bore that Hood has gone to Blue Mountain. 

On the 21st of Octoher I reached Graylesville, had my bivouac 
in an open field back of the village, and remained there till the 
28th. During that time General Schofield arrived, with the two 
divisionB of Generals Wagner (formerly Newton's) and Morgan, 
which were returned to their respective corps (the Fourth and 
Fourteenth), and General Schofield resumed his own command 
of the Army of the Ohio, then on the Coosa River, near Cedar 
BlufE. General Joseph A. Mower also arrived, and was assigned 
to command a division in the Seventeenth Corps ; and General 
J. H. Wilson came, having been sent from Virginia by General 
Grant, for the purpose of commanding all my cavalry. I first 
intended to organize this cavalry into a corps of three small 
divisions, to be commanded by General "Wilson ; but the horses 
were well run down, and, at Wilson's instance, I concluded to 
retain only one division of four thousand five hundred men, 
with selected horses, under General Kilpatrick, and to send 
General Wilson back with all the rest to Nashville, to be re- 
organized and to act under General Thomas in the defense of 
Tennessee. Orders to this effect were made on the 21th of Oc- 

General Grant, in designating General Wilson to command 


my cavalry, predicted that he would, by his personal actiTity, in- 
crease the effect of that arm ^^ fifty per cent.,'' and he adTised 
that he should be sent south, to accomplish all that I had pro- 
posed to do with the main army ; but I had not so much&ithin 
cavalry as he had, and pref err^ to adhere to my original inten- 
tion of goiug myself with a competent force. 

About this time I learned that G^eral Beanregard liad 
reached Hood's army at Gadsden ; that, without asfluming di- 
rect command of that army, he had authority from the Con- 
federate Government to direct all its movements, and to call to 
his assistance the whole strength of the South. His orders, on 
assuming command, were full of alarm and desperation, dated— 

Hbadquabtsbs Militabt Diyisiov of tbb West, ) 

October 17, 1864. f 

In assuming command, at this critical Jnnotnre, of the Military Division 
of the West, I appeal to my countrymen, of all dasses and aeotiona, for their 
generous support. In assigning me to this responsible podtion, the Presi- 
dent of the Oonfederate States has extended to me the assurance of his 
earnest support. The Executives of your States meet me with similar ex- 
pressions of their devotion to our cause. The noble army in the Held, 
composed of brave men and gallant officers, are strangers to me, bat I 
know they will do all that patriots can achieve. . . . 

The army of Sherman still defiantly holds Atlanta. Ue ca,^ and must 
be driven from it. It is only for the good people of Georgia and surround- 
ing States to speak the word, and the work is done. We have abundant 
provisions. There are men enough in the country, liable to and able for 
service, to accomplish the result. . • . 

My countrymen, respond to this call as you have done in days that are 
past, and, with the blessing of a kind and overruling Providence, the enemy 
shall be driven from your soil. The security of your wives and daughters 
from the insults and outrages of a brutal foe shall be established soon, and 
be followed by a permanent and honorable peace. The claims of home and 
country, wife and children, uniting with the demands of honor and patriot- 
ism, summon us to the field. We cannot, dare not, will not fail to respond. 
Full of hope and confidence, I come to join you in your struggles, sharing 
your privations, and, with your brave and true men, to strike the blow that 
shall bring success to our arms, triumph to our cause, and peace to our 
country I 

G. T. Beattbeoabd, General 



Notwithstanding this Bomewliat boastful order or appeal, 
General Beaur^ard did not actually accompany General Ilood 
onliis disastrouB march to ISTashville, but took post at Corinth, 
IGflsissippi, to control the movement of his supplies and to 
watch me. 

At Gaylesville the pursuit of Hood by the army under my 
immediate command may be said to have ceased. Dunng this 
pmsuit, the Fifteenth Corps was commanded by its senior major- 
general presentyP. J. Osterhaus, in the absence of General John 
A. Logan ; and the Seventeenth Corps was commanded by Briga- 
dier-General T. E. G. Bansom, the senior officer present, in the 
absence of General Frank P. Blair. 

General Bansom was a young, most gallant, and promis- 
ing officer, son of the Colonel Bansom who was killed at Cha- 
pnltepec, in the Mexican War. He had served with the Army of 
the Tennessee in 1862 and 1863, at Yicksburg, where he was 
fieverely wounded. He was not well at the time we started 
from Atlanta, but he insisted on going along with his commands 
His symptoms became more aggravated on the march, and wh^ 
we were encamped near Gaylesville, I visited him in compwy 
with Surgeon John Moore, XJnited States Army, who said that 
the ease was one of typhoid fever, which would likely prove 
fataL A few days after, viz., the 28th, he was being earned on, 
a litter toward Bome ; and as I rode from Gaylesville to Bome,^ 
I passed lum by the way, stopped, and spoke with him,, but 
did not then suppose he was so near his end. The next day,^ 
however, his escort reached Bome, bearing his dead body. The- 
officer in charge reported that, shortly after I had passed,. his. 
symptoms became so much worse that they stopped at a farm- 
house by the road-side, where he died that evening. His body. 
was at once sent to Chicago for burial, and a monument has 
been ordered by the Society of the Army of the Tennessee to 
be erected in his memory. 

On the 36th of October I learned that Hood's whole army 
had made its appearance about Decatur, Alabama, ^and at once 
caused a strong reconnoissance to be made down; the Coosa to near - 
Gadsden, which revealed the truth that the enepiy. was gone, 



except a small force of cavalry, commanded bj General Wheel- 
er, whicli had been left to watdi ua. I then finally resolved on 
my future course, which was to leave Hood to be encountered 
by General Thomas, while I should carry into full effect the 
long-contemplated project of marching for the searcoast, and 
thence to operate toward Eichmond. But it was all-important 
to me and to our cause that General Thomas should have an 
ample force, equal to any and every emergency. 

lie then had at Nashville about eight or ten thousand new 
troops, and as many more civil employes of the Quartermasters 
Department, which were not suited for the field, but would be 
most useful in manning the excellent forts that already covered 
Nashville. At Chattanooga, he had General Steedman's divi- 
sion, about five thousand men, besides gamsons for Chatta- 
nooga, Bridgeport, and Stevenson ; at Murfreesboro' he also had 
General Bousseau's division, which was full five thousand strong, 
independent of the necessary garrisons for the railroad. At 
Decatur and Huntsville, Alabama, was the infantry division of 
General B. S. Granger, estimated at four thousand ; and near 
Florence, Alabama, watching the crossings of the Tennessee, 
were General Edward Hatch's division of cavalry, four thou- 
sand; General Croxton's brigade, twenty-five hundred; and 
Colonel Capron's brigade, twelve hundred; besides which, 
General J. II. Wilson had collected in Nashville about ten 
thousand dismounted cavalry, for which he was rapidly collect- 
ing the necessary horses for a remount. All these aggregated 
about forty-five thousand men. General A. J. Smith at that 
time was in Missouri, with the two divisions of the Sixteenth 
Corps which had been diverted to that quarter to assist General 
Bosecrans in driving the rebel General Price out of Missouri. 
This object had been accomplished, and these troops, numbering 
from eight to ten thousand, had been ordered to Nashville. To 
these I proposed at first to add only the Fourth Corps (General 
Stanley), fifteen thousand; and that corps was ordered from 
Gaylesville to march to Chattanooga, and thence report for or- 
ders to General Thomas ; but subsequently, on the 30tb of Oc- 
tober, at Bome, Georgia, learning from General Thomas that 


lie new troops promised by General Grant were coming forward 
▼erjr dowly, I concluded to further reenf orce him by General 
Sdwfield's corps (Twenty-third), twelve thousand, which corps 
aeeordingly marched for Besaca, and there took the cars for 
Chattanooga. I then knew that General Thomas would have 
an ample force with which to encounter General Hood any- 
where in the open field, besides garrisons to secure the rail- 
road to his rear and as far forward as Chattanooga. And, more- 
over, I was more than convinced that he would have ample time 
for preparation ; for, on that very day. General R. S. Granger 
had telegraphed me from Decatur, Alabama : 

I omitted to mention another reason why Hood ivill go to Tascnmbia 
before crossing the Tennessee River. He was evidently oat of supplies. 
Hia men were all gmmbling ; the first thing the prisoners asked for was 
lometbiiig to eat. Hood could not get any thing if he should cross this 
of Bogenville. 

I knew that the coimtry about Decatur and Tuscumbia, Ala- 
bama, was bare of provisions, and inferred that General Hood 
ironld have to draw his supplies, not only of food, but of stores, 
Nothing, and ammunition, from Mobile, Montgomery, and Selma, 
&Jabam% by the railroad around by Meridian and Corinth, Mis- 
assippi, which we had most effectually disabled the previous 

General Hood did not make a serious attack on Decatur, but 
imig around it from October 26th to the 30th, when he drew 
sff and marched for a point on the south side of the Tennessee 
Etiver, opposite Florence, where he was compelled to remain 
learly a month, to collect the necessary supplies for his contem- 
plated invasion of Tennessee and Kentucky. 

The Fourth Corps (Stanley) had already reached Chattanooga, 
ind had been transported by rail to Pulaski, Tennessee ; and 
Greneral Thomas ordered General Schofield, with the Twenty- 
tliird Corps, to Columbia, Tennessee, a place intermediate be- 
tween Hood (then on the Tennessee Kiver, opposite Florence) 
md Fgrrest, opposite Johnsonville. 

On the Slst of October General Croxton, of the cavalry, re- 

164 ATLANTA AND AFTEE. [1864. 

ported that tlie enemy had crossed the Tennessee Biver foui 
miles above Florence^ and that he had endeavored to stop bim, 
but without success. Still, I was convinced that Hood's army 
was in no condition to march for Nashville, and that a good deal 
of further delay might reasonably be counted on. I also rested 
with much confidence on the fact that the Tennessee Elver below 
Muscle Shoals was strongly patrolled by gunboats, and that the 
reach of the river above Muscle Shoals, from Decatur as high up 
as our railroad at Bridgeport, was also guarded by gunboat so 
that Ilood, to cross over, would be compelled to select a point 
inaccessible to these gunboats. He actually did choose such a 
place, at the old railroad-piers, four miles above Florence, Ala- 
bama, which is below Muscle Shoals and above Colbert Shoals. 

On the 31st of Octol)er Forrest made his appearance on the 
Tennessee Eiver opposite Johnsonville (whence a new railroad 
led to Kashville), and with his cavalry and field-pieces actually 
crippled and captured two gunboats with five of our transports, 
a feat of arms which, I confess, excited my admiration. 

There is no doubt that the month of October closed to ns 
looting decidedly squally ; but, somehow, I was sustained in 
the belief that in a very few days the tide would turn. 

On the 1st of November I telegraphed very fully to General 
Grant, at City Point, who must have been disturbed by the vHd 
rumors that tilled the country, and on the 2d of November re- 
ceived (at Home) this dispatch : 

City Point, Xonemher 1, IS&l— C p. %. 
Major- General Shebman : 

Do you not think it advisable, now that Ilood has gone so far north, to en- 
tirely ruin him before starting on your proposed campaign ? With Hood's army 
destroyed, you can go where you please with impunity. I belioved and 
still believe, if you had started south while Hood was in the neighborhood 
of yoU| he would have been forced to go after you. Now that he is fitf 
away he might look upon the chase as useless, and he will go in one direc- 
tion while you are pushing in the other. If you can see a chance of 
destroying Hood's array, attend to that first, and make your other movi 


U. S. Grant, Lieutenant- General, 

My answer is dated — 


Hove, Gxosoia, Sjvembtr 2, 1864. 
Imtenant-GeneralU. S. Grant, City Point, Virginia: 

Yoor dispatch is received. If I could hope to overhaul Hood, I woald 
tarn agunst him with mj whole force ; then he would retreat to the south- 
west, drawing me as a decoj awaj from Georgia, which is his chief ohject. 
If ha ventnres north of the Tennessee River, I may turn in that direction, 
tod endeavor to get below him on his line of retreat; but thus far he 
Itis not gone above the Tennessee River. General Thomas will have a force 
•trong enough to prevent his reaching any country in which we have an 
interest ; and he has orders, if Hood turns to follow me, to push for Selma, 
Alabama. No single army can catch Hood, and I am convinced the best 
refulta will follow from our defeating Jeff. Davis^s cherbhed plan of making 
me leave Georgia by mancenvring. Thus far I have confined my efforts to 
thwart this plan, and have reduced baggage so that I can pick up and start 
In snj direction ; bnt I regard the pursuit of Hood as useless. Still, if he 
attempts to invade Middle Tennessee, I will hold Decatur, and be prepared 
to moye in that direction ; but, unless I let go of Atlanta, my force will not 
be equal to his. W. T. Shesman, Major- General. 

By this date, under the intelligent and energetic action of 
Colonel "W. "W. Wright, and with the labor of fifteen hundred 
men, the railroad break of fifteen miles about Dalton was re- 
paired so far as to admit of the passage of cars, and I transferred 
my headquarters to Kingston as more central ; and from that 
place, on the same day (November 2d), again telegraphed to 
General Grant. 

KcroflTOsr, Geobola., Xovsmbtr 2, 1864 
Lieutenant- General U. S. Grant, City Point, Virginia: 

If I tarn back, the whole effect of my campaign wDl be lost. By my 
moTements I have thrown Beauregard (Hood) well to the west, and Thomas 
will hare ample time and snflSclent troops to hold him until the reinforce- 
ments from Miflsonri reach him. We have now ample supplies at Ghat- 
tannooga and Atlanta, and can stand a month^ff interruption to our com- 
mmiicationa. I do not believe the Gonfederate army can reach our rail- 
road-lines except by cavalry-raids, and Wilson will have cavalry enough to 
eheekmate them. I am clearly of opinion that the best results will follow 
my contemplated movement through Georgia. 

W. T. SnKBMAN, Major- General. 

That same day I received, in answer to the Rome dispatch, 
the following : 


Cnr Ponrr, Yiboxhia, K<n€mh§r 2, 18M- 1L90 a. tl 
Major- General Shebman : 

Your dispatch of 9 A. ic. yesterday is Jnst reoeiyed. I dispatcbed you 
the same date, advising that Hood's army, now that it had worked to &r 
north, ought to he looked upon now as the " ohject^' With the force, how* 
ever, that you have left with Oeneral Thomas, he most he ahle to take can 
of Hood and destroy him. 

I do not see that yon can withdraw fh>m where yon are to follow Hood, 
without giving up all we have gained in territory. I say, then, go on as yoa 
propose. U. S. Gbast, Lieutenant- GemnA 

This was the first time that Qeneral Grant assented to the 
'^ march to the sea," and, although many of his warm friends and 
admirers insist that he was the author and projector of that 
march, and that I simply executed his plan% General Grant has 
never, in my opinion, thought so or said so. The truth is f nllf 
given in an original letter of President Lincoln, which I reeelTed 
at Savannah, Georgia, and have at this instant before me, 
every word of which is in his own familiar handwriting. It is 
dated — 

WASHnroToir, Deemier S6, 186i 

"Wlien you were about leaving Atlanta for the Atlantic coast, I vtf 
anxious, if not fearful ; but, feeling that you were the better judge, and re- 
membering " nothing risked, nothing gained," I did not interfere. Ko^i 
the undertaking being a success, the honor is all yonrs ; for I believe none 
of ns went furtlier than to acquiesce ; and, taking the work of General 
Thomas into account, as it should be taken, it is indeed a great success, l^ot 
only does it aflbrd the obvious and immediate military advantages, but, in 
showing to the world that your army could be divided, putting the stronger 
part to an important new service, and yet leaving enough to vanquish tb6 
old opposing force of the whole, Ilood^s army, it brings those who sat in 
darkness to see a great ligbt But what next ? I suppose it will be safer 
if I leave General Grant and yourself to decide. ^ A. Lincoln. 

Of course, this judgment, made after the event, was ex- 
tremely flattering and was all I ever expected, a recognition of 
the truth and of its importance. I have often been asked, 
by well-meaning friends, when the thought of that march first 
entered my mind. I knew that an army which had pene- 
trated Georgia as far as Atlanta could not turn back. It must 

18«4.] ATLANTA AND AFTER. 167 

go ahead, but when, how, and where, depended on many eon- 
fiiderationB. As soon as Hood had shifted across from Love- 
joy's to Pahnetto, I saw the move in my " mind's eye ; " and, 
i^er JeS. Davis's speech at Pahnetto, of September 2Cth, I was 
more poeitive in my conviction, but was in doubt as to the 
time and manner. When General Hood first struck our rail- 
road above Marietta, we were not ready, and I was forced 
to watch his movements further, till he had " carromed " off 
to the west of Decatur. Then I was perfectly convinced, and 
had no longer a shadow of doubt. The only possible question 
was as to Thomas's strength and ability to meet Hood in the 
opea field. I did not suppose that General Hood, though rash, 
would venture to attack fortified places like AUatoona, Eesaca, 
Decatur, and Nashville ; but he did so, and in so doing he played 
into our hands perfectly. 

On the 2d of November I was at Kingston, Georgia, and my 
ioup corps — ^the Fifteenth, Seventeenth, Fourteenth, and Twen- 
tieth — ^with one division of cavalry, were strung from Eome to 
Atlanta. Our railroads and telegraph had been repaired, and I 
deliberately prepared for the march to Savannah, distant three 
hundred nules from Atlanta. All the sick and wounded men had 
been sent back by rail to Chattanooga ; all our wagon-trains had 
been carefully overhauled and loaded, so as to bo ready to start 
on an honr^s notice, and there was no serious enemy in our front. 

O^ieral Hood remained still at Florence, Alabama, occupy- 
ing both banks of the Tennessee Eiver, busy in collecting shoes 
and clothing for his men, and the necessary ammunition and 
stares with which to invade Tennessee, most of which had to 
come from Mobile, Selma, and Montgomery, Alabama, over 
ndlioads that were still broken. Beauregard was at Corinth, 
hastening forward these necessary preparations. 

General Thomas was at Nashville, with Wilson's dismounted 
cavaliy and a mass of new troops and quartermaster's em- 
ploy^ amply suflBcient to defend the place. The Fourth and 
Twenty-third Corps, under Generals Stanley and Schofield, 
were posted at Pulaski, Tennessee, and the cavalry of Hatch, 
Croxton, and Capron, were about Florence, watching Hood. 

168 ATLANTA AND AFTER. [186i. 

Smith's (A. J.) two divisions of the Sixteenth Corps were still 
in Missouri, but were reported as ready to embark at Lexington 
for the Cumberland Eiver and Kashville. Of course, Greneral 
Thomas saw that on him would likely fall the real blow, and 
was naturaUy anxious. He stiU kept Granger's division at De- 
catur, Eousseau's at Murfreesboro', and Steedman's at Chatta- 
nooga, with strong railroad guards at all the essential points 
intermediate, confident that by means of this very railroad he 
could make his concentration sooner than Hood could possibly 
march up from Florence. 

Meantime, General F. P. Blair had rejoined his corps (Seven- 
teenth), and we were receiving at Kingston recruits and returned 
furlough-men, distributing them to their proper companies. 
Paymasters had come down to pay off our men before their 
departure to a new sphere of action, and commissioners were 
also on hand from tlie several States to take the vote of our men 
in the presidential election then agitating the country. 

On the 6th .of November, at Bangston, I wrote and tele- 
graphed to Gteneral Grant, reviewing the whole situation, gave 
him my full plan of action, stated that I was ready to march as 
soon as the election was over, and appointed November 10th as 
the day for starting. On the 8th I received this dispatch. 

Cnr PoDcr, Vibqcoa, Nwcemher 7, 1864—10.30 f. il 
jr^/or-(rtfn«ra2 Sherman : 

Tour dispatch of this evening received. I see no present reason for 
changing year plan. Shonld anj arise, you will see it, or if I do I will 
inform you. I think every thing here is favorable now. Great good fortone 
attend you I I believe yon will be eminently saccessfal, and, at worst, can 
only make a march less fruitful of results than hoped for. 

U. S. Grant, Lieutenant- GeneraL 

Meant iiuo trains of cars were whirling by, carrying to the 
rear an immense amount of stores which had accumulated at At- 
lanta, and at the other stations along the railroad ; and Greneral 
Steoilman had come down to Kingston, to take charge of the 
liual evacuation and withdn\wal of the several garrisons below 

1864.) ATLANTA AND AFTER. 169 

On the 10th of November the movement may bo said to 

bave fairly began. All the troops designed for the campaign 

were ordered to march for Atlanta, and General Corse, before 

eradiating his post at Home, was ordered to bum all the mills, 

factories, etc.| etc., that conld be nsefol to the enemy, should he 

undertake to pursue u% or resume military possession of the 

coimtiy. This was done on the night of the 10th, and next day 

CoTBe reached Kingston. On the 11th General Thomas and I 

interchanged full dispatches. He had heard of the arrival of 

General A. J. Smith's two divisions at Paducah, which would 

•nrely reach Nashville much sooner than General Hood could 

possibly do from Florence, so that he was perfectly satisfied 

with his share of the army. 

On the 12th, with a full staff, I started from Kingston for 
Atlanta ; and about noon of that day we reached Cartersville, 
and sat on the edge of a porch to rest, when the telegraph op- 
erator, Mr. Van Valkenburg, or Eddy, got the wire down from 
the poles to his lap, in which he held a small pocket instrument. 
Calling " Chattanooga," he received tliis message from General 
Tbmas, dated — 

Nashville, November 12, 1864—8.80. a. m. 
iCajcT'Gmeral Shxbman : 

Your dispatch of twelve o'clock last night is received. I have no fears 
that Beauregard can do ns anj harm now, and, if he attempts to follow yon, 
I win follow him as far as possible. If he docs not follow you, I will then 
thoroughly organize my troops, and believe I shall have men enough to 
ndn bim imless he gets oat of the way very rapidly. 

The comitry of Middle Alabama, I learn, is teeming with supplies this 
year, which will be greatly to our advantage. I have no additional news 
to report firom the direction of Florence. 

I am now convinced that the greater part of Beauregard's army is near 
norence and Tuscnmbia, and that you will have at least a clear road before 
yoa for several days, and that your success will fully equal your expecta- 
tioDfl. Geobgb II. Thomas, Major- General, 

I answered simply : " Dispatch received — all right." About 
that instant of time, some of our men bnmt a bridge, which 
fievered the telegraph-wire, and all communication with the rear 
ceised thenceforth. 

170 ATLANTA AND AFTER. [1864. 

Ab we rode on toward Atlanta tliat night, I remember the 
railroad-trams going to the rear with a forions speed ; the en- 
gineers and the few men about the trains waving ns an affec- 
tionate adien. It snrely was a strange event — ^two hostile armies 
marching in opposite directions, each in the fall belief that it 
was achieving a final and conclusive result in a great war ; and 
I was strongly inspired with the f eehng that the movement on 
our part was a direct attack upon the rebel armj and the rebel 
capital at Eichmond, though a full thousand miles of hostile 
country intervened, and that, for better or worse, it would end 
the war. 




On the 12th of November the raUroad and telegraph com- 
unications with the rear were broken, and the anny stood de- 
^ed from all friends, dependent on its own resources and sup- 
:es. Ko time was to be lost ; all the detachments were ordered 
maich rapidly for Atlanta, breaking up the railroad en route^ 
1 generally to so damage the country as to make it untenable 
the enemy. By the 14:th all the troops had arrived at or near 
[anta, and were, according to orders, grouped into two wings, 
t light and left, commanded respectively by Major-Generals 
O. Howard and H. "W. Slocum, both comparatively young 
a, but educated and experienced officers, fully competent to 
ir command. 

The right wing was composed of the Fifteenth Corps, Ma- 
-General P. J. Osterhaus commanding, and the Seventeenth 
•pe, Major-General Frank P. Blair commanding. 
The left wing was composed of the Fourteenth Corps, Major- 
aeral Jefferson C. Davis conmianding, and the Twentieth 
rpB, Brigadier-General A. S. Williams conamanding. 
The Fifteenth Corps had four divisions, commanded by 
gadierOenerals Charles E. Woods, W. B. Hazen, John E. 
iih, and John M. Corse. 
The Seventeenth Corps had three divisions, commanded by 




Major-General J. A. Mower, and Brigadier-Generals M. D. 
Leggett and Giles A. Smith. 

The Fourteenth Corps had three divisions, commanded bj 
Brigadier-Generals TV. P. Carlin, James D. Morgan, and A 

The Twentieth Corps had also three divisions, commanded 
by Brigadier-Generals N. J. Jackson, John W. Geary, and 
W. T. Ward. 

The cavalry division was held separate, subject to my own 
orders. It was commanded by Brigadier-General Judson Kil- 
patrick, and was composed of two brigades, commanded by 
Colonels Eli H. Murray, of Kentucky, and Smith D. Atkins, of 

The strength of the army, as officially reported, is given in 
the following tables, and shows an aggregate of fifty-five thou- 
sand three hundred and twenty-nine infantry, five thousand ant 
sixty-three cavalry, and eighteen hundred and twelve artillery — 
in all, sixty-two thousand two hundred and four officers an* 
men. {See table for December 1st.) 



KoTtmbtr 10. 

D«c«mb«r I. 










AfirfiT<»c*t<» .......,T-T-, Tt- 




•"•©•^ft***^ .»«»....••••....•..•••..• 

The most extraordinary efforts had been made to purge th 
army of non-combatants and of sick men, for we knew we 
that there was to be no place of safety save with the army itselC 
our wagons were loaded with ammunition, provisions, and foi^ 
age, and we could ill afford to haul even sick men in the ami 
bulances, so that all on this cxliibit may be assumed to hava 
been able-bodied, experienced soldiers, well armed, well equippec 
and provided, as far as human foresight could, with all the 
essentials of life, strength, and vigorous action. 




s I 

I II it 

- I 



il i 


H i 

174 THE MABOH TO THE SEA. [1864. 

The two general orders made for this march appear to me, 
even at this late day, so dear, emphatici and well-digested, that 
no account of that historic event is perfect without them, and 
I give them entire, even at the seeming appearance of repe- 
tition; and, though thej called for great sacrifice and labor on 
the part of the officers and men, I insist that these orders were 
obeyed as well as any similar orders ever were, by an army oper- 
ating wholly in an enemy's conntiy, and dispersed, as we neces- 
sarily were, during the subsequent period of nearly six months. 

[9p«dal Field Oidaft, Ko. U9.] 


IS THX Fold, KDrosrov, Gsobqia, ITovemier 8, ISoi. \ 

The general commanding deems it proper at thb time to inform tbe 
officers and men of the Fourteenth, Fifteenth, Seventeenth, and Twentieth 
Oorps, that he has organized them into an army for a special purpose, well 
known to the War Department and to (General Grant. It is sofficient for 
you to know that it involves a departure from our present base, and a long 
and difficult march to a new one. All the chances of war have been ecm- 
sidered and provided for, as four as human sagacity can. All he asks of yoa 
is to maintdn that discipline, patience, and courage, which have oha^acto^ 
izcd you in the past ; and he hopes, through you, to strike a blow at oor 
enemy that will have a material effect in producing what we all so modi 
desire, his complete overthrow. Of all things, the roost important is, thit 
the men, during marches and in camp, keep their places and do not scatter 
about as stragglers or foragers, to be picked up by a hostile people in detail 
It is also of the utmost importance that our wagons should not be loaded 
with any thing but provisions and ammunition. All surplus servants, non- 
combatants, and refugees, should now go to the rear, and none should be en- 
couraged to encumber us on the march. At some future time we will be 
able to provide for the poor whites and blacks who seek to escape tbe 
bondage under which they are now suffering. With these few simple cau- 
tions, he hopes to lead you to achievements equal in importance to those 
of the past. 

By order of Major-General TV. T. Sherman, 

L. M. Dayton, Aide-de-Camp. 

[Special Field Orders, No. 120.] 

Headquarters 'Militart Dmsiox of thb Misstssipn, \ 
IN THE FiiCLD, Kingston, Georqia, November 9, 1864 ) 

1. For the purpose of military operations, this army is divided into two 
wings viz. : 

1864.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 1^7 

the exception of the advance and rear guards, pnrsaed paths 
improvised by the side of the wagons, nnless they were forced 
to use a bridge or canseway in common. 

I reached Atlanta dnring the afternoon of the 14th, and 

found that all preparations had been made — Colonel Beckwith, 

chief commissary, reporting one million two hmidred thousand 

rations in possession of tie troops, which was about twenty 

Jays' supply, and he had on hand a good supply of beef-cattle 

to be driven along on the hoof. Of forage, the supply was 

limited, being of oats and com enough for five days, but I 

knew that within that time we would reach a country well 

stocked with com, which had been gathered and stored in cribs, 

seemingly for our use, by Governor Brown's militia. 

Colonel Poe, United States Engineers, of my staff, had been 
busy in his special task of destruction. He had a large force at 
work, had leveled the great depot, round-house, and the ma- 
chine-fihops of the Georgia Kailroad, and had applied fire to 
the wreck. One of these machine-shops had been used by the 
rebels as an arsenal, and in it were stored piles of shot and shell, 
some of which proved to be loaded, and that night was made 
hideous by the bursting of shells, whoso fragments came un- 
comfortably near Judge Lyon's house, in which I was quartered. 
The fire also reached the block of stores near the depot, and the 
heart of the city was in fiames all night, but the fire did not 
reach the parts of Atlanta where the court-house was, or the 
great mass of dwelling-houses. 

The march from Atlanta began on the morning of Novem- 
ber 15th, the right wing and cavalry following the railroad 
southeast toward Jonesboro', and General Slocum with the 
Twentieth Corps leading off to the east by Decatur and Stone 
Mountain, toward Madison. These were divergent lines, de- 
signed to threaten both Macon and Augusta at the same time, 
so as to prevent a concentration at our intended destination, 
or ** objective," Milledgeville, the capital of Georgia, distant 
soatheaBt about one hundred miles. The time allowed each 
oolimui for reaching Milledgeville was seven days. I remained 
in Atlanta during the 15th with the Fourteenth Corps, and the 


176 THE MARGE TO THE SEA. [1864. 

kind, tlie parties engaged will refrain from abnuve or threatening language, 
and may, where the officer in command thinks proper, give written certifi- 
cates of the facts, bat no receipts; and they will endeavor to leave with 
each family a reasonable portion for their maintenance, 

7. Negroes who are able-bodied and can be o'f service to the several 
columns may be taken along; but each army commander will bear in 
mind that the question of supplies is a very important one, and that his first 
duty is to see to those who bear arms. 

8. The organization, at once, of a good pioneer battalion for each army 
corps, composed if possible of negroes, should be attended to. This bat- 
talion should follow the advance-guard, repair roads and double them if 
possible, so that the columns will not be delayed after reaching bad places. 
Also^ army commanders should practise the habit of giving the artillery and 
wagons the road, marching their troops on one side, and instruct their 
troops to assist wagons at steep hills or bad crossings of streams. 

9. Captain 0. M. Poe, chief-engineer, wiU asngn to each wing of the 
army a pontoon-train, fully equipped and organized ; and the commanders 
thereof will see to their being properly protected at all times. 

By order of Migor-General W. T. Sherman, 

L. M. Datton, Aids-de-Camp, 

The greatest possible attention had been given to the artil- 
lery and wagon trains. The nnmber of guns had been reduced 
to sixty-five, or about one gun to each thousand men, and these 
\\rere generally in batteries of four guns each. 

Each gun, caisson, and forge, was drawn by four teams of 
horses. We had in all about twenty-five hundred wagons, with 
teams of six mules to each, and six hundred ambulances, with 
two horses to each. The loads were made comparatively light, 
about twenty-five hundred pounds net; each wagon carrying 
in addition the forage needed by its own team. Each soldier 
carried on Iub person forty rounds of ammunition, and in the 
wagons were enough cartridges to make up about two hundred 
rounds pA* man, and in like manner two hundred rounds of as- 
sorted ammunition were carried for each gun. 

The wagon-trains were divided equally between the four 
corps, so that each had about eight hundred wagons, and these 
usually on the march occupied five miles or more of road. 
Each corps commander managed his own train ; and habitu- 
ally the artillery and wagons had the road, while the men, with 


the exception of the advance and rear guards, pursued paths 
improvised hy the side of the wagons, unless they were forced 
to use a hridge or causeway in common. 

I reached Atlanta during the afternoon of the 14th, and 
found that all preparations had heen made — Colonel Beckwith, 
chief commissary, reporting one million two hundred thousand 
rations in possession of the troops, which was about twenty 
days^ supply, and he had on hand a good supply of beef-cattle 
to be driven along on the hoof. Of forage, the supply was 
limited, being of oats and com enough for five days, but I 
knew that within that time we would reach a country well 
stocked with com, which had been gathered and stored in cribs, 
seemingly for our use, by Governor Brown's militia. 

Colonel Poe, United States Engineers, of my staff, had been 
busy in his special task of destruction. He had a large force at 
work, had leveled the great depot, round-house, and the ma- 
chine-shops of the Georgia Eailroad, and had applied fire to 
the wreck. One of these machine-shops had been used by the 
rebels as an arsenal, and in it were stored piles of shot and shell, 
some of which proved to be loaded, and that night was made 
hideous by the bursting of shells, whose fragments came un- 
comfortably near Judge Lyon's house, in which I was quartered. 
The fire also reached the block of stores near the depot, and the 
heart of the city was in fiames all night, but the fire did not 
reach the parts of Atlanta where the court-house was, or the 
great mass of dwelling-houses. 

The march from Atlanta began on the morning of Novem- 
ber 15th, the right wing and cavalry following the railroad 
southeast toward Jonesboro', and General Slocum with the 
Twentieth Corps leading off to the east by Decatur and Stone 
Momitain, toward Madison. These were divergent lines, de- 
signed to threaten both Macon and Augusta at the same time, 
BO as to prevent a concentration at our intended destination, 
or ** objective," Milledgeville, the capital of Georgia, distant 
southeast about one hundred miles. The time allowed each 
oolmnn for reaching Milledgeville was seven days. I remained 
in Atlanta during the 15th with the Fourteenth Corps, and the 



rear-guard of the right wing, to complete the loading of tlx< 
trains, and the destmction of the buildings of Atlanta whid] 
could be converted to hostile uses, and on the morning of ttie 
16th started with my personal staff, a company of Alabama 
cavaby, commanded by Lieutenant Snelling, and an infanti^ 
company, commanded by Lieutenant McCrory, which guarded 
our small train of wagons. 

My staff was then composed, of Major L. M. Dayton, aide- 
de-camp and acting adjutant-general, Major J. C. McCoy, and 
Major J. C. Audenried, aides. Major Ward Nichols Lad 
joined some weeks before at Gaylesville, Alabama, and was at- 
tached as an acting aide-de-camp. Also Major Henry Hitch- 
cock had joined at the same time as judge-advocate. Colonel 
Charles Ewing was inspector-general, and Surgeon John Hoore 
medical director. These constituted our mess. We bad no 
tents, only the flies, with whidi we nightly made bivouacs with 
the assistance of the abundant pine-boughs, which made excel- 
lent shelter, as well as beds. 

Colonel L. C. Easton was chief-quartermaster ; Colonel Amos 
Beckwith, chief -commissaiy ; Colonel O. M. Poe, chief -engineer; 
and Colonel T. G. Baylor, chief of ordnance. These invariaUy 
rode with us during the day, but they had a separate camp and 
mess at night. 

General William F. Barry had been chief of artillery in the 
previous campaign, but at Kingston his face was so swollen 
with erysipelas that he was reluctantly compelled to leave na 
for the rear, and he could not, on recovering, rejoin us till ve 
had reached Savannah. 

About 7 A. M. of November 16th we rode out of Adanta by 
the Decatur road, filled by the marching troops and wagons of 
the Fourteenth Corps ; and reaching the hill, just outside of 
the old rebel works, we naturally paused to look back upon the 
scenes of our past battles. We stood upon the very gronnd 
whereon was fought the bloody battle of July 22d, and conld 
see the copse of wood where McPherson fell. Behind as 
lay Atlanta, smouldering and in ruins, the black smoke rising 
high in air, and hanging like a pall over the ruined citv. Away 


off in the distance, on the McDonough road, was the rear of 
Howard's colmnn, the gun-barrels glistening in the snn, the 
white-topped wagons stretching away to the south ; and right be- 
fore Hs the Fourteenth Corps, marching steadily and rapidly, 
with a cheery look and swinging pace, that made light of the 
thousand miles that lay between us and Eichmond. Some 
band, by accident, struck up the anthem of " John Brown's soid 
goes marching on ; " the men caught up the strain, and never 
before or since have I heard the chorus of " Glory, glory, halle- 
Injah!*' done with more spirit, or in better harmony of time and 

Then we turned our horses' heads to tlie east ; Atlanta was 
won lost behind the screen of trees, and became a thing of 
the past. Around it clings many a thought of desperate bat- 
tle, of Lope and fear, that now seem like the memory of a 
dream; and I have never seen the place since. The day was 
extremely beautiful, clear sunlight, with bracing air, and an un- 
osnal feeling of exhilaration seemed to pei'vade all minds — a 
feeling of something to come, vague and undefined, still full of 
venture and intense interest Even the common soldiers caught 
the inspiration, and many a group called out to me as I worked 
my way past them, " Uncle Billy, I guess Grant is waiting for 
us at Sichmond ! " Indeed, the general sentiment was that we 
were marching for Bichmond, and that there we should end the 
war, but how and when they seemed to care not ; nor did they 
measure the distance, or count the cost in life, or bother their 
bndna about the great rivers to be crossed, and the food re- 
quired for man and beast, that had to be gathered by the way. 
There was a "devil-may-care" feeling pervading officers and 
men, that made me feel the full load of responsibility, for suc- 
cess would be accepted as a matter of course, whereas, should 
we fail, this "march" would be adjudged the wild adventure 
of a crazy fooL I had no purpose to march direct for 
Bidmiond by way of Augusta and Charlotte, but always de- 
signed to reach the sea-coast first at Savannah or Port Boyal, 
South Carolina, and even kept in mind the alternative of Pen* 



The first night out we camped by the road-side near litboma. 
Stone Mountain, a mass of granite, was in plain view, cut out in 
dear outline against the blue sky ; the whole horizon was lurid 
with the bonfires of rail-ties, and groups of men all night were 
carrying the heated rails to the nearest trees, and bending them 
around the trunks. Colonel Poe had provided tools for ripping 
up the rails and twisting them when hot ; but the best and eadest 
way is the one I have described, of heating the middle of the 
iron-rails on bonfires made of the cross-ties, and then winding 
them around a telegraph-pole or the trunk of some eonyenient 
sapling. I attached much importance to this destruction of the 
railroad, gave it my own personal attention, and made reiterated 
orders to others on the subject. 

The next day wo passed through the handsome town of 
Covington, the soldiers closing up their ranks, the color-bear- 
ers unfurling their flags, and the bands striking up patriotic airs. 
The white people came out of their houses to behold the sight, 
spite of their deep hatred of the invaders, and the negroes were 
simply frantic with joy. TVTienevcr they heard my name, they 
clustered about my horse, shouted and prayed in tiieir peculiar 
style, which had a natural eloquence that would have moved a 
stone. I have witnessed hundreds, if not thousands, of such 
scenes ; and can now see a poor girl, in the very ecstasy of the 
Methodist "shout," hugging the banner of one of the regiments, 
and jumping up to the " feet of Jesus." 

I remember, when riding around by a by-street in Covington, 
to avoid the crowd that followed the marching column, that some 
one brought me an invitation to dine with a sister of Sam. An- 
derson, who was a cadet at TTest Point with me ; but the mes- 
senger reached me after we had passed the main part of the 
town. I asked to be excused, and rode on to a place desig- 
nated for camp, at the crossing of the Ulcofauhachee Eiver, 
about four miles to the east of the town. Ilere we made our 
bivouac, and I walked up to a plantation-house close by, where 
were assembled many negroes, among them an old, gray-haired 
man, of as fine a head as I ever saw. I asked him if he under- 
stood about the war and its progress. He said he did ; that he 

1864.] THE MAECH TO THE SEA. 181 

had been looking for the " angel of the Lord " ever since he was 
knee-high, and, though we professed to be fighting for the Union, 
he enpposed that slavery was the canse, and that our success was 
to be his freedom. I asked him if all the negro slaves compre- 
hended this fact, and he said they surely did. I then explained 
to him that we wanted the slaves to remain where they were, and 
not to load us down with useless mouths, whidi would eat up 
the food needed for our fighting-men ; that our success was their 
lasored freedom ; that we could receive a few of their young, 
learty men as pioneers ; but that, if they followed us in swarms 
)f old and young, feeble and helpless, it would simply load us 
lown and cripple us in our great task. I think Major Henry 
BStchcock was with me on that occasion, and made a note of 
iie conversation, and I believe that old man spread this message 
x> the slaves, which was carried from mouth to mouth, to the 
rery end of our journey, and that it in part saved us from the 
p«at danger we incurred of swelling our numbers so that famine 
^ould have attended our progress. It was at this very planta- 
ion that a soldier passed me with a ham on his musket, a jug of 
lor^um-molasses under his arm, and a big piece of honey in 
lis hand, from whidi he was eating, and, catching my eye, he 
lemarked satto voce and carelessly to a comrade, ^^ Forage liber- 
dly on the country," quoting from my general orders. On this 
xxaaion, as on many others that fell under my personal ob- 
lervation, I reproved the man, explained that foraging must 
)e limited to the regular parties properly detailed, and that all 
>ioyifiions thus obtained must be deliver^ to the regular com- 
nissaries, to be fairly distributed to the men who kept their 

From Covington the Fourteenth Corps (Davis's), with which 
[ was traveling, turned to the right for MilledgeviQe, via Shady 
[)ale. General Slocum was ahead at Madison, with the Twen 
aeth Corps, having torn up the railroad as far as that place, and 
lienoe had sent Geary's division on to the Oconee, to bum the 
iridgea across that stream, when this corps turned south by 
Satonton, for Milledgeville, the common " objective" for the 
irsfe stage of the " march." We found abundance of com, mo 


lasses, meal, bacon, and sweet-potatoes. "We also took a go^ 
many cows and oxen, and a large number of mules. In all tii^^ 
the country was quite rich, never before having been yisat^ 
by a hostile anny; the recent crop had been excellent, L-^^ 
l)een just gathered and laid by for the winter. Ab a rule, v^^ 
destroyed none, but kept our wagons full, and fed our tean^^^ 

The skill and success of the men in collecting forage was oc^^^ 
of the features of this march. Each brigade commander ha ^ 
authority to detail a company of foragers, usually about fi ft^ — ^ 
men, with one or two commissioned oflScers selected for tin 
boldness and enterprise. This party would be dispatched befor^ 
daylight with a knowledge of the intended day's march an< 
camp ; would proceed on foot five or six miles from the iout» 
traveled by their brigade, and then visit every plantation am 
farm within range. They would osually procure a wagon oz 
family carriage, load it with bacon, corn-meal, turkeys, chick- :^ 
ens, ducks, and every thing that could be used as food oi 
forage, and would then regain the main road, usually in ad— 
vance of their train. TVTien this came up, they would delivera^'^^ 
to the brigade commissary the supplies thus gathered by fhe^^ -•^ 
way. Often would I pass these foraging-parties at the road — --^' 
side, waiting for their wagons to come up, and was amused S^^| 
at their strange collections — mules, horses, even cattle, packed 
with old saddles and loaded with hams, bacon, bags of corn- 
meal, and poultry of every character and description. Al- 
though this foraging was attended with great danger and hard 
work, there seemed to be a charm about it that attracted the 
soldiers, and it was a privilege to bo detailed on such a party. 
Daily they returned mounted on all sorts of beasts, which 
were at once taken from them and appropriated to the gen- 
eral use ; but the next day they would start out again on foot, 
only to repeat the experience of the day before. K"o doubt, 
many acts of pillage, robbery, and violence, were committed by 
these parties of foragers, usually called " bummers ; " for I have 
since heard of jewelry taken from women, and the plunder of 
articles that never reached the commissary ; but these acts were 

1854.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 183 

exceptional and incidental. I never heard of any cases of mm*- 
der or rape ; and no army could have carried along sufficient 
food and forage for a march of three hundred miles ; so that 
foraging in some shape was necessary. The country was sparsely 
settled, with no magistrates or civil authorities who could re- 
spond to requisitions, as is done in all the wars of Europe ; so 
that this system of foraging was simply indispensable to our 
success. By it our men were well supplied with all the essen- 
tials of life and health, while the wagons retained enough in 
case of unexpected delay, and our animals were well fed. Indeed, 
when we reached Savannah, the trains were pronounced by ex- 
perts to be the finest in flesh and appearance ever seen with 
any army. 

Habitually each corps followed some main road, and the 
foragers, being kept* out on the exposed flank, served all the 
military uses of flankers. The main columns gathered, by the 
roads traveled, much forage and food, chiefly meat, com, and 
sweet-potatoes, and it was the duty of each division and brigade 
quartermaster to fill his wagons as fast as the contents were 
issued to the troops. The wagon-trains had the right to the 
road oLwaya^ but each wagon was required to keep closed up, so 
as to leave no gaps in the column. If for any purpose any 
wagon or group of wagons dropped out of place, they had to 
wait for the rear. And this was always dreaded, for each 
brigade commander wanted his train up at camp as soon after 
reaching it with his men as possible. 

I have seen much skill and industry displayed by these 
quartermasters on the march, in trying to load their wagons 
with com and fodder by the way without losing their place in 
column. They would, while marcliing, shift the loads of 
wagons, so as to have six or ten of them empty. Then, riding 
well ahead, they would secure possession of certain stacks of 
fodder near the road, or cribs of com, leave some men in charge, 
then open fences and a road back for a couple of miles, return 
to their trains, divert the empty wagons out of column, and con- 
duct them rapidly to their forage, load up and regain their place 
in oolmnn without losing distance. On one occasion I remem- 

184 THE MABOH TO THE 8EA. [1864. . 

ber to have Been ten or a dozen wagons thus loaded with com 
from two or tliree fall cribs, almost without halting. These 
cribs were built of logs, and roofed. The train-guard, by a 
lever, had raised the whole side of the crib a foot or two ; the 
wagons drove close alongside, and the men in the cribs, lying on 
their backs, kicked out a wagon-load of com in the time I have 
taken to describe it. 

In a well-ordered and well-disciplined army, these things 
might be deemed irregular, but I am convinced that the in- 
genuity of these younger officers accomplished many things far 
better than I could have ordered, and the marches were thus 
made, and the distances were accomplished, in the most admira- 
ble way. Habitually we started from camp at the earliest break 
of dawn, and usually reached camp soon after noon. The 
marches varied from ten to fifteen mile? a day, though some- 
times on extreme flanks it was necessary to make as much as 
twenty, but the rate of travel was regulated by the wagons ; and, 
considering the nature of the roads, fifteen miles per day waa 
deemed the limit. 

The pontoon-trains were in like manner distributed in about 
equal proportions to the four corps, giving each a section of 
about nine hundred feet. The pontoons were of the skeleton 
pattern, with cotton-canvas covers, each boat, with its propor- 
tion of balks and chesses, constituting a load for one wagon. By 
uniting two such sectious together, we could make a bridge of 
eighteen hundred feet, enough for any river we had to traverse ; 
but habitually the leading brigade would, out of the abundant 
timber, improvise a bridge before the pontoon-train could come 
up, unless in the cases of rivers of considerable magnitude, such 
as the Ocmulgee, Oconee, Ogeechee, Savannah, etc. 

On the 20th of Xovember I was still with the Fourteenth 
Corps, near Eatonton Factory, waiting to hear of the Twentieth 
Corps; and on the 21st wo camped near the house of a man 
named Vann ; the next day, about 4 p. m.. General Davis had 
halted his head of column on a wooded ridge, overlooking an 
extensive slope of cultivated countr}'-, about ten miles short of 
Milledgeville, and was deploying his troops for cairrp when I got 

1864.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 186 

tip. There was a high, raw wind blowing, and I asked him why 
he had chosen so cold and bleak a position. He explained that 
he had accomplished his full distance for the day, and had there 
fixi abundance of. wood and water. He explained further that 
his advance-guard was a mile or so ahead ; so I rode on, asking 
him to let his rear division, as it came up, move some distance 
^ead into the depression or valley beyond. Eiding on some 
distance to the border of a plantation, I turned out of the main 
ix>ad into a cluster of wild-plum bushes, that broke the force of 
the cold November wind, dismounted, and instructed the staff 
to pick ont the place for our camp. 

The afternoon was unusually raw and cold. My orderly was 
Q>t hand with his invariable saddle-bags, which contained a change 
of nnder-dothing, my maps, a flask of whiskey, and bunch of 
cigars. Taking a drink and lighting a cigar, I walked to a row 
of negro-huts close by, entered one and found a soldier or two 
farming themselves by a wood-fire. I took their place by the 
fire, intending to wait there till our wagons had got up, and 
ft camp made for the night. I was talking to the old negro 
^oman, when some one came and explained to me that, if I 
^obM come farther down the road, I could find a better place. 
So I started on foot, and found on the main road a good dou- 
ble-hewed4og house, in one room of which Colonel Poe, Dr. 
Moore, and others, had started a fire. I sent back orders to the 
•* plnm-bnshes " to bring our horses and saddles up to this house, 
and an 6rderly to conduct our headquarter wagons to the same 
place. In looking around the room, I saw a small box, like a 
candle-box, marked "Howell Cobb," and, on inquiring of a 
n^ro, found that we were at the plantation of General Howell 
Cobb, of Gteorgia, one of the leading rebels of the South, then 
a general in the Southern army, and who had been Secretary 
of the United States Treasury in Mr. Buchanan's time. Of 
course, we confiscated his property, and found it rich in com, 
beans^ pea-nuts, and sorghum-molasses. Extensive fields wero 
an round the house ; I sent word back to General Davis to ex- 
plain whose plantation it was, and instructed him to spare 
That night huge bonfires consumed the fence-rails, 


186 THE MARCH TO THE SEA. [ISew— ^*- 

kept our soldiers warm, and tlie teamsters and men, as well 
the slaves, carried off an immense quantity of com and provi- 
sions of all sorts. 

In due season the hoadqimrter wagons came up, and we got 
supper. After supper I sat on a chair astride, with mj back to 
a good fire, musing, and became conscious that an old negro, 
with a tallow-candle in Ids hand, was scanning my face closelj. 
I inquired, " AVhat do you want, old man I " He answered, 
" Dey say you is Massa Sherman." T answered that snch was 
the case, and inquired what he wanted. He only wanted to 
look at me, and kept muttering, "Dis ni^er can't deep dis 
night.'' I asked him why he trembled so, and he said that ho 
wanted to be sure that we were in fact " Yankees,*' for on a 
former occasion some rebel cavalry had put on light-blue ove^ 
coats, personating Yankee troops, and many of the negroes 
were deceived thereby, himself among the number — had shown 
them sympathy, and had in consequence been nnmerdfhlly 
beaten therefor. This time he wanted to be certain before com- 
mitting himself ; so I told him to go out on the poTch| from 
which he could sec the whole horizon lit up with camp-fires, and 
he could then judge whether he had ever seen any thing like it 
before. The old man became convinced that the "Yankees" 
had come at last, about whom he had been dreaming all his 
life ; and some of the staff-officers gave him a strong drink of 
whiskey, which set his tongue going. Lieutenant Snelling, who 
commanded my escort, was a Georgian, and recognized in this old 
negro a favorite slave of his uncle, who resided about six miles 
off ; but the old slave did not at first recognize his young mas- 
ter in our uniform. One of my staff-officers asked him what 
had become of his young master, George. He did not know, 
only that he had gone off to the war, and he supposed him 
killed, as a matter of course. His attention was then drawn to 
Snelling's face, when he fell on his knees and thanked God that 
he had foimd Ids yoimg master alive and along with iho 
Yankees. Snelling inquired all about his uncle and the family, 
asked my permission to go and pay his uncle a visit, which 
I granted, of course, and the next moniing he de8cril)ed to me 

1804.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 187 

Ills visit. The uncle was not cordial, by any means, to find liis 
nephew in the ranks of the host that was desolating the land, 
and SneUing came back, having exchanged his tired horse for a 
fresher one out of his uncle's stables, explaining that sorely 
eome of the " bummers" would have got the horse had he not. 

The next morning, November 23d, we rode into Milledge- 
'ville, the capital of the State, whither the Twentieth Corps had 
preceded us ; and during that day the left wing was all united, 
in and around Milledgeville. From the inhabitants we learned 
that some of Kilpatrick's cavalry had preceded us by a couple 
of days, and that all of the right wing was at and near Gordon, 
twelve miles oflf, viz., the place where the branch railroad camo 
to Milledgeville from the Macon & Savannah road. The first 
etage of the journey was, therefore, complete, and absolutely 

General Howard soon reported by letter the operations 
of his light wing, which, on leaving Atlanta, had substan- 
tiaUy followed the two roads toward Macon, by Jonesboro' and 
McDonough, and reached the Ocmulgee at Planters' Factory, 
which they crossed, by the aid of the pontoon-train, during the 
18ih and 19th of November. Thence, with the Seventeenth 
Corps (General Blair's) he (General Howard) had marched via 
Monticdio toward Gordon, having dispatched Kilpatrick's cav- 
alry, supported by the Fifteenth Corps (Osterhaus's), to feign on 
Maoon. Ealpatrick met the enemy's cavalry about four miles 
out of Macon, and drove them rapidly back into the bridge-de- 
fenses held by infantry. Eilpatrick charged these, got inside 
the parapet, but could not hold it, and retired to his infantry 
aupports, near Griswold Station. The Fifteenth Corps tore up 
the raibxttd-track eastward from Griswold, leaving Charles E. 
"Wood's division behind as a rear-guard— one brigade of which 
was intrenched across the road, with some of Kilpatrick's cav- 
alry on the flanks. On the 22d of November General G. TV. 
Smith, with a division of troops, came out of Macon, attacked 
ihip brigade (Walcutt's) in position, and was handsomely re- 
pulsed and driven back into Macon. This brigade was in part 
armed with Spencer repeating-rifles, and its fire was so rapid 


188 THE MARCH TO THE SEA. [18^^ 

that General Smith insists to this day that he eneounteted 
whole division ; but he is mistaken ; he was beaten by one bri 
ade (Walcutt's), and made no further effort to molest our a 
tions from that direction. General Walcutt was wounded 
the leg, and had to ride the rest of the distance to Savannah i 
a carriage. 

Therefore, by the 28d, I was in Milledgeville with the lefS^ 
wing, and was in full communication with the right wing ai 
Gordon. The people of Milledgeville remained at home, except 
the Governor (Brown), the State officers, and Legislature, who 
had ignominiously fled, in the utmost disorder and confusion ; 
standing not on the order of their going, but going at once — 
some by rail, some by carriages, and many on foot. Some of 
the citizens who remained behind described this flight of the 
*' brave and patriotic" Governor Brown^ He had occupied a 
public building known as the ^^ Governor's Mansion," and had 
hastily stripped it of carpets, curtains, and furniture of all 
sorts, which were removed to a train of freightK^urs, which 
carried away these things — even the cabbages and Tegetables 
from his kitchen and cellar — leaving behind muskets, ammuni- 
tion, and the public archives. On arrival at Milledgeville I 
occupied the same public mansion, and was soon overwhelmed 
Avith appeals for protection. General Slocum had previously 
arrived with the Twentieth Corps, had taken up his quarters 
at the Milledgeville Ilotel, established a good provost-guard, 
and excellent order was maintained. The most frantic appeals 
had been made by the Governor and Legislature for help 
from every quarter, and the people of the State had been 
called out en masse to resist and destroy the invaders of their 
homes and firesides. Even the prisoners and convicts of the 
penitentiary were released on condition of serving as soldiers, 
and the cadets were taken from their military college for the 
same purpose. These constituted a small battalion, under Gen- 
eral Harry "Wayne, a former officer of the United States Army, 
and son of the then Justice TVayne of the Supreme Court. But 
these hastily retreated east across the Oconee Eiver, leaving oa 
a good bridge, which we promptly secured. 


At MilledgeTille we found newspapers from all the Sontli, 

find learned the consternation which had filled the Southern 

niind at our temerity; many charging that we were actually 

fleeing for our lives and seeking safety at the hands of our fleet 

on the sea-coast. All demanded that we should be assailed, 

^ front, flank, and rear ;" that provisions should be destroyed in 

advance, so that we would starve ; that bridges should be 

burned, roads obstructed, and no mercy shown us. Judging 

trora the tone of the Southern press of that day, the outside 

^^orld must have supposed us ruined and lost. I give a few 

of these appeals as samples, which to-day must sound strange to 

the parties who made them : 

CoBurrn, Mississippi, November 18, 1864. 
To th0 People of Georgia: 

Arise for the defense of your native soil ! Rally around your patriotic 
Oovemor and gallant soldiers I Obstruct and destroy all the roads in Sher- 
I front, flank, and rear, and his army will soon starve in your midst. 
confident. Be resolute. Trust in an overruling Providence, and suc- 
wWl soon crown your efforts. I hasten to join you in the defense of 
year homes and firesides. G. T. Bsaubeoabd. 

BiciDC02n>, Nbvwiber 18, 1861. 
T9 the People af Georgia : 

Yoa have now the best opportunity ever yet presented to destroy the 
«nemj. Put every thing at the disposal of our generals ; remove all pro- 
-yisions from the path of the invader, and put all obstructions in his path. 

Every dtizen with his gun, and every negro with his spade and axe, 
ean do the work of a soldier. You can destroy the enemy by retarding his 

Georgians, be firm I Act promptly, and fear not I 

B. n. IIiLL, Senator. 
I most cordially approve the above. 

Jamis a. Seddon, Seeretary of War, 

BiouMOND, November 19, 1864. 
To ih€ People of Georgia : 

We have had a special conference with President Davis and the Secretary 
of War, and are able to assure you that they have done and are still doing 
■n that can be done to meet the emergency that presses upon you. Lot 
trerjman fiy to arms I Remove your negroes, horses, cattle, and provisions 
from Sherman's army, and burn what you cannot carry. Bum all bridges. 

190 THE MARCH TO THE SEA. [18^^^ 

and block up the roads in his ronte. Assail the invader in fhmt^ flank, aX^^ 
rear, by night and bj dav. Let him have no rest. 


J. H. Betnolds, General N. Lbsivb, 

John T. Shoemaksb, Jobkph 1L Smrb, 

Membeno/ (knqrm^ 

Of course, we were rather amused flian alarmed at thes**** 
threats, and made light of the feeble opposition offered to ou^:-- 
progress. Some of the officers (in the spirit of mischief) gathere^= 
together in the vacant hall of Bepresentatives^ elected a Speaker^ 
and constituted themselves the Legislature of the State of ^ 
Georgia I A proposition was made to repeal the ordinance of 
secession, which was well debated, and resulted in its repeal by^ 
afairvotel I was not present at these frolics, but heard of them -^ 
at the time, and enjoyed the joke. 

Meantime orders were made for the total destruction of the 
arsenal and its contents, and of such public buildings as could 
be easily converted to hostile uses. But little or no damage was 
done to private property, and General Slocum, with my approval, 
spared several mills, and many thousands of bales of cotton, 
taking what he knew to be worthless bonds, that the cotton 
sliould not be used for the Confederacy. Meantime the ri^t 
wing continued its movement along the railroad toward Savan- 
nah, tearing up the track and destroying its iron. At the Oconee 
was met a feeble resistance from Harry Wayn^e's troops, but soon 
the pontoon-bridge was laid, and that wing crossed over. Kil- 
patrick's cavalry was brought into Milledgeville, and crossed 
the Oconee by the bridge near the town ; and on the 23d I made 
the general orders for the next stage of the march as far as 
Millen. These were, substantially, for the right wing to follow 
the Savannah Railroad, by roads on its south ; the left wing was 
to move to Sandersville, by Davisboro' and Louisville, while 
the cavalry was ordered by a circuit to the north, and to march 
rapidly for MiUen, to rescue our prisoners of war confined there. 
The distance was about a hundred miles. 

General Wheeler, with his division of rebel cavalry, had suc- 
ceeded in getting ahead of us between Milledgeville and Au£fasta; 


«nd Greneral W. J, Hardee had been dispatched by General 

Beauregard from Hood's army to oppose our progress directly 

ii front.. He had, however, brought with him no troops, but 

itiied on his influence with the Georgians (of whose State he 

Was a native) to arouse the people, and with them to annihilate 

Slerman'B army I 

On the 24th we renewed the inarch, and I accompanied the 
XVentieth Corps, which took the direct road to Sandersville, 
tvhich we reached simultaneously with the Fourteenth Corps, 
On the 26th. A brigade of rebel cavalry was deployed before 
the town, and was driven in and through it by our skirmish- 
line. I myself saw the rebel cavalry apply fire to stacks of fod- 
der standing in the fields at Sandersville, and gave orders to 
l^nm some unoccupied dwellings close by. On entering the town, 
I told certain citizens (who would be sure to spread the report) 
tJiat, if the enemy attempted to carry out their threat to bum 
tlieir food, com, and fodder, in our route, I would most im- 
donbtedly execute to the letter the general orders of devastation 
made at the outset of the campaign. With this exception, and 
one or two minor cases near Savannah, the people did not 
destroy food, for they saw clearly that it would be ruin to them- 

At Sandersville I halted the left wing until I heard that the 
wing was abreast of us on the railroad. During the 
evening a negro was brought to me, who had that day been 
to the station (Tenille), about six miles south of the town. I in- 
quired of him if there were any Yankees there, and he an- 
swered, " Yes." He described in his own way what he had seen. 
** First, there come along some cavalry-men, and they burned 
the depot ; then come along some infantry-men, and they tore 
up the track, and burned it ;" and just before he left they had 
"sot fire to the well I" 

The next morning, viz., the 27th, I rode down to the sta- 
tion, and found General Corse's division (of the Fifteenth Corps) 
engaged in destroying the railroad, and saw the well which 
my negro informant had seen " burnt." It was a square pit 
aboat twenty-five feet deep, boarded up, with wooden steps lead- 


ing to the bottom, wherein was a fine copper pump, to lift 
the water to a tank above. The soldiers had broken up the 
pump, heaved in the steps and lining, and set fire to the msffl ] 
of lumber in the bottom of the well, which corroborated tb© 
negro's description. 

From this point Blair^s corps, the Seventeenth, took up tte 
work of destroying the railroad, the Fifteenth Corps following aiO." 
other road leading eastward, farther to the south of the raiboa^ 
While the left wing was marching toward Louisville, north o^ 
the railroad. General Kilpatrick had, with his cavalry divisio^^ 
moved rapidly toward Waynesboro', on the branch railroad lea^* 
ing from Millen to Augusta. He found Wheeler^s diviaon CF "* 
rebel cavalry there, and had considerable skirmishing with it 
but, learning that our prisoners had been removed two days b^^ 
fore from Millen, he returned to Louisville on the 29th, wher^ 
he found the left wing, llere he remained a couple of days tC^ 
rest his horses, and, receiving orders from me to engage Wheeler^ 
and give him all the fighting he wanted, he procured from^ 
General Slocum the assistance of the infantry division of General J 
Baird, and moved back for Waynesboro' on the 2d of December, 
the remainder of the left wing continuing its march on toward 
Millen. Xear Waynesboro' Wheeler was again encountered, 
and driven through the town and beyond Brier Creek, toward 
Augusta, thus keeping up the delusion that the main army was 
moving toward Augusta. General Kilpatrick's fighting and 
movements about Waynesboro' and Brier Creek were spirited, 
and produced a good effect by relieving the infantry column and 
the wagon-trains of all molestation during their march on Millen. 
Having thus covered that flank, he turned south and followed 
the movement of tlie Fourteenth Corps to Buckhead Church, 
north of Millen and near it. 

On the 3d of December I entered Millen with the Seven- 
teenth Corps (General Frank P. Blair), and there paused one day, 
to communicate with all parts of the army. General Howard 
was south of the Ogecchee Kiver, with the Fifteenth Corps, 
opposite Scarboro'. General Slocum was at Buckhead Church, 
four miles north of Millen, with the Twentieth Corps. The 


enth (Greneral Davis) w^s at Lumpkin's Station, on the 
ta road, about ten miles north of Millen, and the cavaby 
a was within easy support of this wing. Thus the whole 
9ras in good position and in good condition. We had 
• subsisted on the country ; our wagons were full of 
and provisions ; but, as we approached the searcoast, the 
Y became more sandy and barren, and food became more 
; still, with little or no loss, we had traveled two-thirds of 
stance, and I concluded to push on for Savannah. At 
I learned that General Bragg was in Augusta, and that 
il "Wade Hampton had been ordered there from Eich- 
to organize a large cavaliy force with which to resist our 


Qeral Hardee was ahead, between us and Savannah, with 
?^B division, and other irregular troops, that could not, I 
(ured, exceed ten thousand men. I caused the fine depot 
len to be destroyed, and other damage done, and then re- 
the march directly on Savannah, by the four main roads. 
5venteenth Corps (General Blair) followed substantially the 
d, and, along with it, on the 5th of December, I reached 
liee Church, about fifty miles from Savannah, and found 
leah earthworks, which had been thrown up by McLaw's 
B ; but he must have seen that both his flanks were being 
, and prudently retreated to Savannah without a fight. 
9 columns then pursued leisurely their march toward Sa- 
1, com and forage becoming more and more scarce, but 
Ids beginning to occur along the Savannah and Ogeechee 
I, which proved a good substitute, both as food and forage, 
reather was fine, the roads good, and every thing seemed 
)r us. Never do I recall a more agreeable sensation than 
fht of our camps by night, lit up by the fires of fragrant 
nots. The trains were all in good order, and the men 
i to march their fifteen miles a day as though it were 
g. No enemy opposed us, and we could only occasionally 
[le faint reverberation of a gun to our left rear, where we 
diat General Kilpatrick was sldrmishing withWheeler^s 
(T, which persistently followed him. But the infantry coL 

194 THE MARCH TO THE SEA. [1864. 

imms had met with no opposition whatsoever. McLaw's divi- 
sion was falling back before ns, and we occasionally picked np a 
few of his men as prisoners, who insisted that we would meet 
with strong opposition at Savannah. 

On the 8th, as I rode along, I found the column turned out 
of the main road, marching through the fields. Close by, in 
the comer of a fence, was a group of, men standing around a 
handsome young oflScer, whose foot had been blown to pieces 
by a torpedo planted in the road. He was waiting for a sur- 
geon to amputate his leg, and told me that he was riding along 
with the rest of his brigade -staff of the Seventeenth Corps, 
when a torpedo trodden on by his horse had exploded, killing 
the horse and literally blowing off all the flesh from one of his 
legs. I saw the terrible wound, and made full inquiry into the 
facts. There had been no resistance at that point, nothing to 
give warning of danger, and the rebels had planted eight-inch 
shells in the road, with friction-matches to explode them by 
being trodden on. This was not war, but murder, and it made 
me very angry. I immediately ordered a lot of rebel prison- 
ers to be brought from the provost-guard, armed with picks 
and spades, and made them march in dose order along the 
road, so as to explode their own torpedoes, or to discover and 
dig them up. They begged hard, but I reiterated the order, 
and could hardly help laughing at their stepping so gingerly 
along the road, where it was supposed sunken torpedoes might 
explode at each step, but they found no other torpedoes till near 
Fort McAllister. That night we reached Pooler's Station, eight 
Vniles from Savannah, and during the next two days, Decem- 
ber 9th and 10th, the several corps reached the defenses of Sa- 
vannah — the Fourteenth Corps on the left, touching the river; 
the Twentieth Corps next ; then the Seventeenth ; and the Fif- 
teenth on the extreme right ; thus completely investing the city. 
Winhing to rwonnoitro the place in person, I rode forward by 
the I/<>uisvillo road, into a dense wood of oak, pine, and cypress, 
loft tho lioivos, and walked down to the railroad-track, at a place 
whoiv thon^ was a side-track, and a cut about four feet deep. 
Krt>ni tlmt point the railroad was straight, leading into Savan- 


tiaihy and about eight hnndrecl yards off were a rebel pampet 
and battery. I could see the cannoneers preparing to fire, and 
cautioned the officers near me to scatter, as we would likely 
ittract a shot Very soon I saw the white puff of smoke, and, 
iratching dose, caught sight of the ball as it rose in its flight, 
md, finding it coming pretty straight, I stepped a short distance 
o one aide, but noticed a negro very near me in the act of cross- 
Dg the track at right angles. Some one called to him to look 
»ut ; but, before the poor fellow understood his danger, the ball 
a thirty-two-pound round shot) struck the ground, and rose in 
tB fint ricochet, caught the negro under the right jaw, and liter- 
Uj carried away his head, scattering blood and brains about. 
L soldier close by spread an overcoat over the body, and we all 
ondnded to get out of that railroad-cut. Meantime, General 
lower's division of the Seventeenth Corps had crossed the 
anal to the right of the Louisville road, and had found the 
ine of parapet continuous ; so at Savannah we had again run up 
^unst the old familiar parapet, with its deep ditches, canals, 
lid bayous, full of water; and it looked as though another 
i^ge was inevitable. I accordingly made a camp or bivouac 
lear the Louisville road, about five miles from Savannah, and 
orooeeded to invest the place closely, pushing forward recon- 
LoisBances at every available point. 

As soon as it was demonstrated that Savannah was well f or- 
tfied| with a good garrison, commanded by General William J. 
lardee, a competent soldier, I saw that the first step was to 
pen communication with our fleet, supposed to be waiting for 
a with supplies and clothing in Ossabaw Sound. 

Greneral Howard had, some nights previously, sent one of his 
test scouts, Captain Ihmcan, with tsvo men, in a canoe, to drift 
Ast Fort McAllister, and to convey to the fleet a knowledge of 
or approach. General Kilpatrick's cavalry had also been trans- 
ened to the south bank of the Ogeechee, with orders to open 
ommunication with the fleet. Leaving orders with General 
llocnm to press the siege, I instructed General Howard to send 
division with all his engineers to King's Bridge, fourteen and 
half miles southwest from Savannah, to rebuild it. On the 

196 THE MABOH TO THE SEA. [1864 

eyening of the 12tli I rode over myself, and spent the night at 
Mr. King^s house, where I found General Howard, with Gen- 
eral Hazen's division of the Fifteenth Corps. His engineers 
were hard at work on the bridge, which they finished that night, 
and at sunrise Hazen's division passed over. I gave General 
Hazen, in person, his orders to march rapidly down the right 
bank of the Ogeechee, and without hesitation to assault and 
carry Fort McAllister by storm. I knew it to be strong in 
heavy artillery, as against an approach from the sea, but believed 
it open and weak to the rear. I explained to General Hazen, 
fully, that on his action depended the safety of the whole 
army, and the success of the campaign. Kilpatrick had already 
felt the fort, and had gone farther down the coast to Kilkenny 
Bluff, or St. Catharine's Sound, where, on the same day, he had 
communication with a vessel belonging to the blockading fleet ; 
but, at the time, I was not aware of this fact, and trusted en- 
tirely to General Hazen and his division of infantry, the Second 
of the Fifteenth Corps, the same old division which I had com- 
manded at Shiloh and Yicksburg, in which I felt a special pride 
and confidence. 

Having seen General Hazen fairly off, accompanied by Gen- 
eral Howard, I rode with my staff down the left bank of the 
Ogeechee, ten miles to the rice-plantation of a Mr. Cheeves, where 
General Howard had established a signal-station to overlook the 
lower river, and to watch for any vessel of the blockading 
squadron, which the negroes reported to be expecting us, be- 
cause they nightly sent up rockets, and daily dispatched a steam- 
boat up tlio Ogeechee as near to Fort McAllister as it was safe. 

On reaching the rice-mill at Cheeves's, I found a guard and 
a couple of twenty-pound Parrott guns, of De Gres's battery, 
which fired an occasional shot toward Fort McAllister, plainly 
seen over the salt-marsh, about three miles distant. Fort Mc- 
Allister had the rebel fiag fiying, and occasionally sent a heavy 
shot luiok across the marsh to where we were, but otherwise 
cvorv thing about the place looked as peaceable and quiet as on 
the SabKuth. 

The aignal-ofllcor had built a platform on the ridge-pole oi 

18«4.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 197 

the rice-mill. Leaving our horses behind the stacks of rice-straw, 
we all got on the roof of a shed attached to the mill, where- 
from I conld communicate with the signal-officer above, and at 
the same time look out toward Ossabaw Sound, and across the 
Ogeechee Eiver at Fort McAllister. About 2 p. m. we observed 
signs of commotion in the fort, and noticed one or two guns fired 
inland, and some musket-skirmishing in the woods close by. 

This betokened the approach of Hazen's division, which 
had been anxiously expected, and soon thereafter the signal- 
oficer discovered about three miles above the fort a signal-flag, 
with which he conversed, and found it to belong to General 
Hazen, who was preparing to assault the fort, and wanted to 
know if I were there. On being assured of this fact, and that I 
expected the fort to be carried before night, I received by sig- 
nal the assurance of General Hazen that he was making his 
preparations, and would soon attempt the assault. The sun was 
rapidly declining, and I was dreadfully impatient. At that 
very moment some one discovered a faint cloud of smoke, and 
an object gliding, as it were, along the horizon above the tops of 
the sedge toward the sea, which little by little grew till it was 
pronounced to be the smoke-stack of a steamer coming up the 
river. " It must be one of our squadron 1 " Soon the flag of the 
United States was plainly visible, and our attention was divided 
between this approaching steamer and the expected assault. 
When the sun was about an hour high, another signal-message 
came from General Hazen that he was all ready, and I replied 
to go ahead, as a friendly steamer was approaching from below. 
Soon we made out a group of officers on the deck of this 
vessel, signaling with a flag, " "Who are you ? " The answer went 
back promptly, " General Sherman." Then followed the question, 
«*I8 Fort McAllister taken?" "Xot yet, but it wiU be in a 
minute!" Almost at that instant of time, we saw Hazen's 
troops come out of the dark fringe of woods that encompassed 
the fort, the lines dressed as on parade, with colors flying, and 
moving forward with a quick, steady pace. Fort McAllister 
was then all alive, its big guns belching forth dense clouds of 
imokei which soon enveloped our assaulting lincj?. One color 


went down, but was up in a moment On the lines advanced, 
faintly seen in the white, snlphnrous smoke ; there was a pause, 
a cessation of fire ; the smoke cleared away, and the parapets 
were blue with our men, who fired their muskets in the air, and 
shouted so that we actually heard them, or felt that we dii 
Fort McAllister was taken, and the good news was instantly sent 
by the signal-ofiiccr to our navy friends on the approaching gnn- 
boat, for a point of timber had shut out Fort McAllister from 
their view, and they had not seen the action at all, but must 
have heard the cannonading. 

During the progress of the assault, our little group on 
Cheeves's mill hardly breathed ; but no sooner did we see our 
fl;igs on the parapet than I exclaimed, in the language of the 
l>oor negro at CobVs plantation, " This nigger will have no 
sleep this night ! " 

I was resolved to communicate with our fleet that nigtt, 
which happened to be a beautiful moonlight one. At the 
wharf belonging to Chceves's mill was a small skifE, that h*" 
been used by our men in fishing or in gathering oysters. ^ 
was there in a minute, called for a volimteer crew, when sevc^f^ 
yoxuu^ otVu'crs, Kicliols and Mcn'itt among the number, B^^ 
thoy were good oarsmen, and volunteered to pull the boat do^^ 
to Tort McAllister. General Howard asked to accompany t^^ 
80 we took seats in the stem of the boat, and our crew of officT'^ 
l>ulle(l out with a will. The tide was setting in strong, and tl:^ 
had a hard pull, for, though the distance was but three miles 
an air-liue, the river was so crooked that the actual distat::^ 
was fully six milci?. On the way down we passed the wreck 
a steamer which had been sunk some yeara before, during*^ 
naval attiick on Fort McAllister. 

Night had fairly set in when we discovered a soldier on t^^ 
beach. I hailed him, and inquired if he knew where Gener^ 
Ilazeu was. lie answered that the general was at the house 
the overseer of the plantation (McAllister's), and that he cou- 
guide me to it. We accordingly landed, tied our boat toa dri^ 
log, and followed our guide through bushes to a frame-hou^ 
standing in a grove of live-oaks, near a row of negjro quarter* 


leneral Hazen was there with his stafiE, in the act of getting sup- 
er; he invited ns to join them, which we accepted promptly, for 
e were really very hungry. Of course, I congratulated Hazen 
06t heartily on his brilliant success, and praised its execution 
!iy highly, as it deserved, and he explained to me more in de- 
[1 the exact results. The fort was an inclosed work, and its 
id-front was in the nature of a bastion and curtains, with good 
rapet, ditch, fraise^ and chevavx-de-friMj made out of the 
ge branches of live-oaks. Luckily, the rebels had left the 
ger and unwieldy trunks on the ground, which served as a 
od cover for the skirmish-line, which crept behind these logs, 
d from them kept the artillerists from loading and firing their 
ns accurately. 

The assault had been made by three parties in line, one from 
low, one from above the fort, and the third directly in rear, 
>ng the capital. All were simultaneous, and had to pass a 
od abatis and line of torpedoes, which actually killed more 

the assailants than the heavy guns of the fort, which gener- 
y overshot the mark. Hazen's entire loss was reported, killed 
d wounded, ninety-two. Each party reached the parapet 
oat the same time, and the garrison inside, of about two hun- 
ad and fifty men (about fifty of them killed or wounded), were 

his power. The commanding officer. Major Anderson, was 
that moment a prisoner, and General Hazen invited him in 
take supper with us, which he did. 

Up to this time General Hazen did not know that a gun- 
at was in the river below the fort ; for it was shut oflE from 
^t by a point of timber, and I was determined to board her 
at night, at whatever risk or cost, as I wanted some news of 
lat was going on in the outer world. Accordingly, after 
pper, we aU walked down to the fort, nearly a mile from the 
(use where we had been, entered Fort McAllister, held by a 
g;iment of Hazen's troops, and the sentinel cautioned us to 
t very careful, as the ground outside the fort was full of torpe- 
lea. Indeed, while we were there, a torpedo exploded, tear- 
g to pieces a poor fellow who was hunting for a dead com- 
de. Inside the fort lay the dead as they had fallen, and they 

200 THE MAROH TO THE SEA. [1864. 

could hardly be distinguished from their living comrades, sleep- 
ing soundly side by side in the pale moonlight. In the river, 
dose by the fort, was a good yawl tied to a stake, but the tide 
was high, and it required some time to get it in to the bank ; the 
conunanding officer, whose name I cannot recall, manned the 
boat with a good crew of his men, and, with General Howard, 
I entered, and pulled down-fitream, regardless of the warnings 
of all about the torpedoes. 

The night was unusually bright, and we expected to find the 
gunboat within a mile or so ; but, after pulling down the river 
fully three miles, and not seeing the gunboat, I began to think 
she had turned and gone back to the sound ; but we kept on, 
following the bends of the river, and about six miles below Mo- 
Allister we saw her light, and soon were hailed by the vessel at 
anchor. Pulling alongside, we announced ourselves, and were 
received with great warmth and enthusiasm on deck by half a 
dozen naval officers, among them Captain TVilliamson, United 
States Navy. She proved to be the Dandelion, a tender of the 
regular gunboat Flag, posted at the mouth of the Ogeechee. 
All sorts of questions were made and answered, and we learned 
that Captain Duncan had safely reached the squadron, had com- 
municated the good news of our approach, and they had been 
expecting us for some days. They explained that Admiral 
Dahlgren commanded the South-Atlantic Squadron, which was 
then engaged in blockading the coast from Charleston south, 
and was on his flag-ship, the Harvest Moon, lying in Wassaw 
Sound ; that General J. G. Foster was in command of the De- 
partment of the South, with his headquarters at Hilton Head ; 
and that several ships loaded with stores for the army were lying 
in Tybee Roads and in Port Koyal Sound. From these officers 
I also learned that General Grant was still besieging Petersburg 
and Richmond, and that matters and things generally remained 
pretty much the same as when we had left Atlanta. All thoughts 
seemed to have been turned to us in Georgia, cut off from all 
communication with our friends ; and the rebel papers had re- 
ported us to be harassed, defeated, starving, and fleeing for safety 
to the coast. I then asked for pen and paper, and wrote sev- 


enl Iiasty notes to General Foster, Admiral Dahlgren, General 
Grant, and the Secretary of War, giving in general terms the 
actual state of affairs, the fact of the capture of Fort Mc- 
Allister, and of my desire that means should be taken to estab- 
lidi a line of supply from the vessels in port up the Ogeechee 
to the rear of the army. As a sample, I give one of these notes, 
addressed to the Secretary of War, intended for publication to 
relieve the anxiety of our friends at the North generally : 

Ov BoABD Daxdzuon, 088ABAW SousTD, December 13, 18G4— 11.50 p. m. 

To Mm, E. M. Stanton, Secretary of War, Washington, D, G, : 

To-daj, at 5 p. h., General Hazen^s diirision of the Fifteenth Corps carried 

Fort McAllister by assault, captaring its entire garrison and stores. This 

opened to ns Ossabaw Sonnd, and I pushed down to this gunboat to com- 

miinicate with the fleet Before opening commnnication we had completely 

destroyed all the railroads leading into Savannah, and invested the city. 

"Hie left of the army is on the Savannah River three miles above the city, 

and the right on the Ogeechee, at Eing^s Bridge. The army is in splen* 

^d order, and equal to any thing. The weather has been fine, and supplies 

^^re abundant. Our march was most agreeable, and we were not at all 

Molested by guerrillas. 

We reached Savannah three days ago, but, owing to Fort McAllister, 
<teold not communicate; but, now that we have McAllister, we can go 

We have already captured two boats on the Savannah Hiver, and pre- 
^^^ted their gunboats from coming down. 

I estimate the population of Savannah at tw enty-five thousand, and the 

m at fifteen thousand. General Hardee commands. 
We have not lost a wagon on the trip; but have gathered a larr^o 
^^I^ply of negroes, mules, horses, etc., and our teams are in far better con- 
^S-^lxm than when we started. 

.^ My first duty will be to clear the army of surplus negroes, mules, and 
We have utterly destroyed over two hundred miles of rails, and 
stores and provisions that were essential to Lee'S and Hood^s 

The quick work made with McAllister, the opening of communication 
oar fleet, and our consequent independence as to supplies, dissipate all 
^*^^ir boasted threats to head us off and starve the army. 
I regard Savannah as already gained. Yours truly, 

W. T. Shebman, Major- General, 

By this time the night was well advanced, and the tide was 

202 . THE MARCH TO THE SEA, [18W. 

running eLb-strong; so I asked Captain Williamson to tow nsnp 
as near Fort ilcAllister as lie would venture for the torpedoes, 
of wliicli the na\'y-officers had a wholesome dread. The Dande- 
lion steamed up some three or four miles, till the lights of Fort 
McAllister could be seen, when she anchored, and we pulled to 
the fort in our own boat. General Howard and I then walked 
up to the McAllister House, where we found General Hazenand 
his officers asleep on the floor of one of the rooms. Lying 
down on the floor, I was soon fast asleep, but shortly became con- 
scious that some one in the room was inquiring for me among 
the sleepers. Calling out, I was told that an officer of Grencnl 
Foster's staff had just arrived from a steamboat anchored below 
McAllister ; that the general was extremely anxious to see me 
on important business, but that he was lame from an old Mexi- 
can-AYar wound, and could not possibly come to me. I was 
extremely weary from the incessant labor of the day and 
night before, but got up, and again walked down the sandy 
road to McAllister, where I found a boat awaiting us, which ca^ 
ried iis some three miles down the river, to the steamer W. ^• 
Coit (I think), on board of which we found General Foster. 
He had just come from Port Koyal, expecting to flnd Admiral 
Daldgreu in Ossabaw Sound, and, hearing of the capture of 
Foit ifcAllister, he had come up to see me. He described ftUy 
the condition of affairs with his own command in South Caro- 
lina. He had made several serious efforts to effect a lodgment 
on the railroad which connects Savannah with Charleston near 
Pocotaligo, but had not succeeded in reaching the railroad itself, 
though he had a full division of troops, strongly intrenched, near 
13road River, within cannon-range of the railroad. He ex- 
plained, moreover, that there were at Port Royal abundant sup- 
plies of bread and provisions, as well as of clothing, designed 
for our use. We still had in our wagons and in camp abun- 
dance of meat, but we needed bread, sugar, and coffee, and it 
was all-important that a route of supply should at once ^ 
opened, for which puii)ose the aid and assistance of the Bavy 
were indispensable. We accordingly steamed down the Ogeechee 
River to Ossabaw Sound, in hopes to meet Admiral Dahlgre^ 


but he was not there, and we continned on by tlie inland chan- 
nel to Wassaw Sound, where we found the Harvest Moon, and 
Admiral Dahlgren. I was not personally acquainted witli him 
It the time, but he was so extremely kind and courteous that 
I was at once attracted to him. There was nothing in his 
power, he said, which he would not do to assist us, to make our 
eimpaign absolutely successful. He undertook at once to find 
nuek of light draught to carry our supplies from Port Eoyal 
to Cheeves's Mill, or to King's Bridge above, whence they could 
be hauled by wagons to our several camps ; he offered to return 
with me to Fort McAllister, to superintend the removal of tlie 
kxpedoes, and to relieve me of all the details of this most difficult 
wcftTL (Jeneral Foster then concluded to go on to Port Eoyal, 
Bend back to us six hundred thousand rations, and all the 
ifled guns of heavy calibre, and ammumition on hand, with which 
thought we could reach the city of Savannah, from the posi- 
ioM already secured. Admiral Dahlgren then returned with 
le in the Harvest Moon to Fort McAllister. This consumed all 
t the 14th of December ; and by the 15th I had again reached 
'heeves's Mill, where my horse awaited me, and rode on to Gten- 
pbI Howard's headquarters at Anderson's plantation, on the 
luBk-road, about eight miles back of Savannali. I reached 
us place about noon, and immediately sent orders to my 
BHi headquarters, on the Louisville road, to have them brought 
^er to the plank-road, as a place more central and convenient ; 
^^ written notice to Generals Slocum and Howard of all 
® steps taken, and ordered them to get ready to receive 
^ aiege-guns, to put them in position to bombard Savannah, 
S to prepare for the general assault. The country back of 
^iftlmah is very low, and intersected with innumerable Salt- 
er creeks, swamps, and rice-fields. Fortunately the weather 
^ good and the roads were passable, but, should the winter 
^ set in, I knew that we would be much embarrassed. There- 
^ heavy details of men were at once put to work to prepare 
xiarf and depot at King's Bridge, and the roads leading thereto 
^ corduroyed in advance. The Ogeechee Canal was also 
^!>>ed out for use ; and boats, such as were common on the river 

204 THE MARCH TO TlIE SEA. [isei 

plantations, were collected, in which to float stores from our pro- 
posed base on the Ogeechee to the points most conyenient to 
the several camps. 

Slocmn's wing extended from the Sayannah Kiver to the 
canal, and Howard's wing from the canal to the extreme right, 
along down the Little Ogeechee. The enemy occupied not 
only the city itself, with its long line of outer works, but the 
many forts which had been built to guard the approaches 
from the sea — such as at Beaulieu, Bosedew, White Bluff, 
Bonaventura, Thunderbolt, Cansten's Bluff, Forts TatnaD, 
Boggs, etc., etc. I knew that Greneral Hardee could not have a 
garrison strong enough for all these purposes, and I was there- 
fore anxious to break his lines before he could receive reen- 
f orcements from Virginia or Augusta. General Slocum had 
already captured a couple of steamboats trying to pass down 
the Savannah Kiver from Augusta, and had established some of 
his men on Argyle and Hutchinson Islands above the city, and 
wanted to transfer a whole corps to the South Carolina bankj 
but, as the enemy had iron-clad gunboats in the river, I did no^ 
deem it pnident, because the same result could be better acco^' 
plislied f cm General Foster s position at Broad River. 

Fort jMcAlHster was captured as described, lat« in t^^ 
evening of December 13th, and by the 16th many steambo^ 
had passed up as high as King's Bridge ; among them o 
which General Grant had dispatched with the mails for t 
army, which had accumulated since our departure from Atlanta 
under cliarge of Colonel A. H. Markland. These mails we^^ 
most welcome to all the officers and soldiers of the army, wlnC^ 
had been cut off from friends and the world for two montL^ 
and this prompt receipt of letters from home had an exceller^ 
effect, making us feel that home was near. By this vessel al^ 
came Lieutenant Dunn, aide-de-camp, with the following lett^ 
of December 3d, from General Grant, and on the next d 
Colonel Babcock, United States Engineers, arrived with the 1 
ter of December 6th, both of which are in Genei*al Grant's ow^ 
handwriting, and are given entire : 


HBADQVAKnBs Abmsxb ov thb IJinTED Statis, ) 
CiTT Point, YiSGiinA, December 8, 1864. ) 

^- General W. T. Shebmak, commanding Armies near SavannaTt, 

Gkstsbal : Tbe little information gleaned from the Southern press indi- 
ing DO great obstacle to jonr progress, I have directed yonr mails (which 
[ been previously collected in Baltimore by Colonel Markland, special 
nt of the Post- Office Department) to be sent as far lr the blockading 
adron off Savannah, forwarded to you as soon as heard from on 


Not liking to rejoice before the victory is assured, I abstain from con- 
fcolating yon and those under your command, until bottom has been 
lok. I have never had a fear, however, for the result. 
Since you left Atlanta no very great progress has been made here. 
> enemy has been closely watched, though, and prevented from detaching 
inst yon. I think not one man has gone from here, except some twelve 
Ifteen hundred dismounted cavalry. Bragg has gone from WUmington. 
Q trying to take advantage of his absence to get possession of that place. 
ing to some preparations Admiral Porter and General Butler are making 
ilow up Fort Fisher (which, while hoping for the best, I do not believe 
irtide in), there is a delay in getting this expedition off. I hope they 
I bo ready to start by the 7th, and that Bragg will not have started back 

In this letter I do not intend to give you any thing like directions for 
iTft action, but will state a general idea I have, and will get your views 
or yon have established yourself on the sea-coast. With your veteran 
tf I hope to get control of the only two through routes from east to west 
lened by the enemy before the fall of Atlanta. The condition will be 
d by holding Savannah and Augusta, or by holding any other port to the 
; of Sftyannah and Branchville. If Wilmington falls, a force from there 
oo6perate with you. 

TJkasDBB has got back into the defenses of Nashville, with Hood close 
n bim. Decatur has been abandoned, and so have all the roads, except 
mttn one leading to Chattanooga. Part of this falling back was un- 
btedly necessary, and all of it may have been. It did not look so, how- 
r, tome. In my opinion, Thomas far outnumbers Hood in infantry. In 
dry Hood has the advantage in morale and numbers. I hope yet that 
id will be badly crippled, if not destroyed. Tlie general news you 
1 kam from the papers better than I can give it. 
After all becomes quiet, and roads become so bad up here that there is 
If to be a -week or two when nothing can be done, I will run down the 
il to fee yon. If yon desire it, I will ask Mrs. Sherman to go with me. 
Tonrs troly, U. S. Grant, Lieutenant^ General. 


206 THE MARCH TO THE SEA. [1864. 

HsADQrASTEBfl Abmixs ov thb Untted Staxsb, ) 
CiTT PoisT, YxBGiNiA, J)ee6mber 6, 186^ f 

Major- Gerural W, T. Shebman, commanding Military Division of the Mi»- 

General : On reflection since sending mj letter by the hands of Lien- 
tenant Dunn, I have concluded that the most important operation toward 
closing out the rebellion will be to close out Lee and his army. 

You have now destroyed the roads of the South so that it will probably 
take them three months without interruption ta reestablish a through line 
from east to west. In that time I think the job here will be effectually 

My idea now is that you establish a base on the sea-coast, fortify and 
leave in it all your artillery and cavalry, and enough infantry to protect 
them, and at the same time so threaten the interior that the militia of the 
South will have to be kept at home. With the balance of your command 
come here by water with all dispatch. Select yourself the officer to leave in 
command, but you I want in persoiL Unless you see objeoUons to this plan 
which I cannot see, use every vessel going to yon for purposes of trans- 

Hood has Thomas close in NashviUe. I have said all I can to force 
him to attack, without giving the positive order until to-day. To-day, how- 
ever, I could stand it no longer, and gave the order without any reserve. I 
think the battle will take place to-morrow. The result will probably be 
known in New York before Colonel Babcock (the bearer of this) will leave 
it. Colonel Babcock will give you full information of all operations now in 
progress. Very respectfully your obedient servant, 

U. S. Gbant, LieuUnant- General, 

The contents of these letters gave me great uneasiness, for I 
had set my heart on the capture of Savannah, which I believed 
to be practicable, and to be near ; for me to embark for Vir- 
ginia by sea was so complete a change from what I had sup- 
posed would be the course of events that I was very much con- 
cerned, I supposed, as a matter of course, that a fleet of vessels 
would soon pour in, ready to convey the army to Virginia, and 
as General Grant's orders contemplated my leaving the cavalry, 
trains, and artillery, behind, I judged Fort McAllister to be the 
best place for the purpose, and sent my chief-engineer, Colonel 
Poe, to that fort, to reconnoitre the ground, and to prepare 
it so as to make a fortified camp large enough to accommo- 
date the vast herd of mules and horses that would thus be 



left behind. And as some time might be required to collect the 
necessary shipping, which I estimated at little less than a hmidred 
steamers and sailing-vessels, I determined to push operations, 
in hopes to secure the city of Savannah before the necessary 
fleet could be available. All these ideas are given in my answer 
to General Grant's letters (dated December 16, 1864) herewith, 
which is a little more full than the one printed in the report of 
the Committee on the Conduct of the War, because in that copy 
I omitted the matter concerning General Thomas, which now 
need no longer be withheld : 


nr THE Field, kea^ Savannah, December 16, 18(>4. ) 

ZfieuUnant' General U. S. Geaxt, Commander-in-Chief, City Point, Vir- 

GcncBAL : I received, day before yesterday, at the hands of Lieutenant 
I^mm, yonr letter of December 8d, and last night, at the hands of Colonel 
Baboocky that of December 6th, I had previously made you a hasty scrawl 
from the tugboat Dandelion, in Ogeechee River, advising you that the 
Anny had reached the sea-coast, destroying all the railroads across the 
State of Greor^a, investing closely the city of Savannah, and had made con- 
necdoa with the fleet. 

Kno6 writing that note, I have in person met and conferred with General 
Foster and Admiral Dahlgren, and made all the arrangements which were 
deemed essential for reducing the city of Savannah to our possession. But, 
nnce the receipt of yours of the 6th, I have initiated measures looking 
priacipally to coming to you with fifty or sixty thousand infantry, and inci- 
dexitaQy to capture Savannah, if time will allow. 

At the time we carried Fort McAllister by assault so handsomely, with 

™ tirenty-two guns and entire garrison, I was hardly aware.of its impor- 

*•**€« ; bat, since passing down the river with General Foster and up with 

-^amifij Dahlgren, I realize how admirably adapted are Ossabaw Sound 

^'^ Ogeeohee River to supply an uttdj operating against Savannah. Sea- 

^^g Tesselfl can easily come to King^s Bridge, a point on Ogeechee River, 

^^'^teea and a half miles due west of Savannah, from which point we have 

^**^ leading to all our camps. The country is low and sandy, and cut up 

T^**^ marshes, which in wet weather will be very bad, but we have been so 

^^OTed with weather that they are all now comparatively good, and heavy 

^^^Qa are constantly employed in double-corduroying the marshes, so that 

-^•va no fears even of bad weather. Fortunately, also, by liberal and 

A^^^^cnu foraging, we reached the sea -coast abundantly supplied with 

and provisions, needing nothing on arrival except bread. Of this we 


started from Atlanta, with from eight to twentj days' snpplj per < 
and some of the troops only had one day's issae of hread during th< 
of thirty days ; yet they did not want, for sweet-potatoes were very ; 
dant, as well as corn-meal, and our soldiers took to them naturally, 
started with about five thousand head of cattle, and arrived with 
ten thousand, of course consuming mostly turkeys, chickens, sheep, 
and the cattle of the country. As to our mules and horses, we left I 
ta with about twenty-five hundred wagons, many of which were d 
by mules which had not recovered from the Chattanooga starvatic 
of which were replaced, the poor mules shot, and our transportati 
now in superb condition. I have no doubt the State of Georgia has lo 
our operations, fifteen thousand first-rate mules. As to hors^ £ 
rick collected all his remounts, and it looks to me, in riding alon( 
columns, as though every officer had three or four led horses, and 
regiment seems to be followed by at least fifty negroes and foot 
soldiers, riding on horses and mules. The custom was for each briga 
send out daily a foraging-party of about fifty men, on foot, who invaz 
returned mounted, with several wagons loaded with poultry, potatoes, 
and as the army is composed of about forty brigades, you can estimat 
proximately the number of horses collected. Great numbers of these 
shot by my order, because of the disorganizing effect on our infant 
having too many idlers mounted. General Easton is now engaged ii 
lecting statistics on this subject, but I know the Grovemment will neve 
ceive full accounts of our captures, although the result aimed at was 
attained, viz., to deprive our enemy of them. All these animals I will 
sent to Port Koyal, or collected behind Fort McAllister, to be used by 
cral Saxton in his farming operations, or by the Quartermaster's Dc 
ment, after they are systematically accounted for. While General E; 
is collecting transportation for my troops to James River, I will thrc 
Port Royal Island all our means of transportation I can, and collect 
rest near Fort McAllister, covered by the Ogeechee River and intr< 
ments to be erected, and for which Captain Poe, my chief-engineer, is 
reconnoitring the ground, but in the mean time will act as I have begu 
though the city of Savannah were my objective : namely, the troops will 
tinue to invest Savannah closely, making attacks and feints whoreve: 
have fair ground to stand upon, and I will place some thirty-pound Pari 
which I have got from General Foster, in position, near enough to r 
the centre of the city, and then will demand its surrender. If Grei 
Hardee is alarmed, or fears starvation, he may surrender; otherwise I 
bombard the city, but not risk the lives of our men by assaults acrosf 
narrow causeways, by which alone I can now reach it. 

If I had time, Savannah, with all its dependent fortifications, w 
surely fall into our possession, for we hold all its avenues of supply. 

18«.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 209 

The eDemy has made two desperate efforts to get boats from above to 
the dtjj in both of which he has been foiled — General Slocnin (whose left 
flink rests on the river) oaptnring and burning the first boat, and in the 
Neond instance driving back two gnnboats and capturing the steamer Res- 
date, with seven naval officers and a crew of twenty-five seamen. General 
Slocum occupies Argyle Island and the upper end of Ilutchinson Island, and 
has a brigade on the South Carolina shore opposite, and is very urgent 
to pass one of his corps over to that shore. But, in view of the change of 
plan made necessary by your order of the 6th, I will maintain things in 
Mu quo till I have got all my transportation to the rear and out of the 
wiy, and until I have sea-transportation for the troops you require at James 
fiiver, which I will accompany and command in person. Of course, I will 
leire Ealpatrick, with his cavalry (say five thousand three hundred), and, it 
nty be, a division of the Fifteenth Oorps ; but, before determining on this, I 
ttnrt see General Foster, and may arrange to shift his force (now over 
above the Oharleston Railroad, at the head of Broad River) to the Ogeechee, 
where, in co()peration with Silpatrick^s cavalry, he can better threaten the 
State of Geor^pa than from the direction of Port Royal. Besides, I would 
much prefer not to detach from my regular corps any of its veteran divisions, 
tod would even prefer that other less valuable troops should be sent to rc- 
ciuforce Foster from some other quarter. My four corps, full of experience 
ttid fun of ardor, coming to you en maue^ equal to sixty thousand fighting- 
men, will be a reinforcement that Lee cannot disregard. Indeed, with my 
present command, I had expected, after reducing Savannah, instantly to 
i&areh to Columbia, South Carolina; thence to Raleigh, and thence to re- 
pot to yon. But this would consume, it may be, six weeks' time after the 
&n of Savannah ; whereas, by sea, I can probably reach you with my men 
aod arms before the middle of January. 

I myself am somewhat astonished at the attitude of things in Tennessee. 
I purposely delayed at Kingston until General Thomas assured me that he 
was all ready, and my last dispatch from him of the 12th of November was 
foil of confidence, in which he promised me that he would ruin Hood if he 
dared to advance from Florence, ur^g me to go ahead, and give myself no 
concern about Hood's army in Tennessee. 

Why he did not turn on him at Franklin, after checking and discom- 
fiting him, surpasses my understanding. Indeed, I do not approve of 
his evacuating Decatur, but think he should have assumed tlie ofiensive 
against Hood from Pulaski, in the direction of Wayncsburg. I know full 
well that General Thomas is slow in mind and in action ; but ho is judicious 
and brave, and the troops feel great confidence in him. I still hope ho will 
ontmanoenvre and destroy Hood. 

As to matters in the Southeast, I think Ilardce, in Savannah, has good 
artillerists, some five or six thousand good infantry, and, it may be, a mongrel 



moss of eight to ten thousand militia. In all our marching through GeorgU, 
he has not forced ua to use any thing hut a skirmish-line, though at Kvenl 
points he had erected fortifications and tried to alarm us hy hombastio 
threats. In Savannah he has taken refuge in a line oonstmcted behind 
swamps and overflowed rice-fields, extending fh>m a point on the StTUDih 
River about three miles above the city, around by a branch of the Littb 
Ogeechee, which stream is impassable from its salt-marshes and boggf 
swamps, crossed only by narrow causeways or conmion corduroy-roads. 

There must be twenty-five thousand citizens, men, women, and chiMreo, 
in Savannah, that must also be fed, and how he is to feed them beyood i 
few days I cannot imagine. I know that his requisitions for com on the 
interior counties were not filled, and we are in possession of the rice-fieUs 
and mills, which' could alone be of service to him in this neighborhood, 
lie can draw nothing ftom South Oarolina, save from a small comer don 
in the southeast, and that by a disused wagon-road. I could eosilj get 
possession of this, but hardly deem it worth the risk of making a detach- 
ment, which would be in danger by its isolation from the main army. Our 
whole army is in fine condition as to health, and the weather is splendid. 
For that reason alone I feel a personal dislike to turning northward. I inH 
keep Lieutenant Dunn here until I know the result of my demand for the 
surrender of Savannah, but, whether successful or not, shall not deUjoy 
execution of your order of the 6th, which will depend alone upon the tioM 
it will require to obtain transportation by sea. 

I am, with respect, etc., your obedient servant, 

W. T. Sherman, Major- General United Statu Afntf* 

Having concluded all needful preparations, I rode from mj 
headquarters, on the plank-road, over to General Slocnm's head- 
quarters, on tlio Macon road, and thence dispatched (by flag d 
truce) into Savannah, by the hands of Colonel Ewing, inspecto^ 
general, a demand for the surrender of the place. The following 
letters give the result. General Hardee refused to Bunender, 
and I then resolved to make the attempt to break his line of 
defense at several places, trusting that some one would succeed. 

Headquabtkrs Militart Division or tbb Mistunm,) 
IN TUB Field, Savannah, Geoboia, December 17, 1864 [ 

General William J. Hardee, commanding Confederate Forces in Savannek 

Gen'ebal : Yon have doubtless observed, from jour station at Rosedew 
that sea-going vessels now come through Ossabaw Sound and up the Qge^ 
choe to the rear of mj army, giving mo abundant supplies of all kinds, ind 
more especially heavy ordnance necessary for the reduction of Savannah. 1 

1864.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 211 

luTe alread J received gnns that can cast heavy and destrnotive sliot as far 
ai the heart of your city ; also, I have for some days held and controlled 
ereiy avenue hy which the people and garrison of Savannah can he sup- 
plied, and I am therefore justified in demanding the surrender of the city 
of Savannah, and its dependent forts, and shall wait a reasonahle time for 
joor answer, hefore opening with heavy ordnance. Should you entertain 
the proposition, I am prepared to grant liberal terms to the inhabitants and 
giniflon ; but should I be forced to resort to assault, or the slower and surer 
prooe» of starvation, I shall then feel justified in resorting to the harshest 
measures, and shall make little effort to restrain my army — ^burning to avenge 
the national wrong which they attach to Savannah and other large cities 
which have been so prominent in dragging our country into civil war. I 
mdose you a copy of General Hood^s demand for the surrender of the town 
of B^^aca, to be used by you for what it is worth. 
I have the honor to be your obedient servant, 

W. T. SnEBMAX, Major- General, 


Savaxkah, Gboboia, December 17, 1864. ) 

Mufja^ General W. T. Shbiqcan, commandinj/ Federal Forces near Savanna?^ 

Gctebal: I^hava to acknowledge the receipt of a communication from 
you of this date, in which you demand *Hhe surrender of Savannah and its 
dependent forts," on the ground that you *' have received guns that can 
Bast heavy and destructive shot into the heart of the city," and for the 
EVirther reason that you " have, for some days, held and controlled every 
ivemue by which the people and garrison can be supplied." You add that, 
ihonld yon be *^ forced to resort to assault, or to the slower and surer pro- 
sen of atarvation, you will then feel justified in resorting to the harshest 
neasorea, and will make little effort to restrain your army," etc., etc. The 
)oaitioii of your forces (a half-mile beyond the outer line for the land-de- 
!eiue of Savannah) is, at the nearest point, at least four miles from the heart 
it the eitj. That and the interior line are both intact. 

Tour statement that you have, for some days, held and controlled every 
lyenne by which the people and garrison can be supplied, is incorrect. I 
un in free and constant communication with my department. 

Your demand for the surrender of Savannah and its dependent forts is 

With respect to the threats conveyed in the closing paragraphs of your 
efcter (of what may be expected in case your demand is not complied with), 
! have to say that I have hitherto conducted the military operations intrusted 
oi^y direction in strict accordance with the rules of civilized warfare, and I 
ihoald deeply regret the adoption of any course by you that may force me 

212 THE MARCH TO THE SEA. [186i 

to deviate from tliem in future. I have the honor to be, very respectfoBy, 
your obedient servant, 

W. J. Habdee, Lieutenant-Gemrd, 

Headquabtebb Militabt Divuiox of the Missihifpi, \ 
IN THE Field, zteab Savaknah, Geokola, December 13, 186^6 p. 1. 1 

LieuUnant' General U. S. Ghant, City Pointy Virginia, 

General: I wrote yon at length (by Colonel Babcock) on the 16tli in- 
stant. As I therein explained my purpose, yesterday I made a demand on 
General Hardee for the surrender of the city of Savannah, and to-daj re- 
ceived his answer — ^refusing ; copies of both letters are herewith ineloMd. 
You will notice that I claim that my lines are within easy cannon-range of 
the heart of Savannah ; but General Hardee asserts that we are four and a 
half miles distant. But I myself have been to the intersection gf ^ 
Charleston and Georgia Central Railroads, and the three-mile post ia ^^ 
a few yards beyond, within the line of our pickets. The enemy haa ^ 
pickets outside of his fortified line (which is a full quarter of a mile wit^ 
the three-mile post), and I have the e^ndence of Mr. R.E. Cuyler, Preside"''^^ 
of the Georgia Central Railroad (who was a prisoner in our hands), that ^^ 
mile-posts are measured from the Exchange, which is but two sqnares b^^ 
from the river. By to-morrow morning I will have six thirty-pound Parro*^ 
in position, and General Hardee will learn whether I am right or not IW^ 
the left of our lino, which is on the Savannah River, the spires can be pliui:^ 
socn ; but the country is so densely wooded with pine and livo-oak, and 1^^ 
60 flat, that we can see nothing from any other portion of oar lines. Ge::^ 
eral Slocum feols confident that he con make a successful assault at one ^ 
two points in front of General Davis's (Fourteenth) corps. All* of Generic 
Howard's troops (the right wing) lie behind the Little Ogeechco, and I dont^ 
if it can bo passed by troops in the face of an enemj. Still, wo can mal^ 
strong feints, and if I can get a sufficient number of boats, I shall make 
cooperative demonstration up Vernon River or Wassaw Sound. I shoul *" 
like very much indeed to take Savannah before coming to you ; but^ as 
wrote to you before, I will do nothing rash or hasty, and will embark fo J 
the James River as soon as General Easton (who is gone to Port Royal fo ^ 
that purpose) reports to me that ho has an approximate number of vessel ^ 
for the transportation of the contemplated force. I fear even this will 
cost more delay than you anticipate, for already the movement of our trans- 
ports and the gunboats has retjuired more time than I had expected. V© 
have had dense fogs ; there are more mud-banks in the Ogeechec than were 
reported, and there are no pilots whatever. Admiral Dahlgren promised 
to have the channel buoyed and staked, but it is not done yet. TVe find 
only six feet of water up to King's Bridge at low tide, about ten feet up to 
the rice-mill, and sixteen to Fort McAllister. All these points may be used 


!>7 VBf and we Lave a good, strong bridge across Ogeechee at King's, by 
t^iiioh our wagons can go to Fort McAllister, to which point I am sending 
U wagons not absolately necessary for daily use, the negroes, prisoners of 
^iTi ndc, etc., en routs for Port Royal. In relation to Savannah, you will 
miark that General Hardee refers to his still being in communication with 
is deportment. This language he thought would deceive me; but I 
Q confirmed in the belief that the route to which he refers (the Union 
lank-road on the South Carolina shore) is inadequate to feed his army and 
e people of Savannah, and General Foster assures me that he has his force 
I that very road, near the head of Broad River, so that cars no longer run 
tween Charleston and Savannah. We hold this end of the Charleston 
diroad, and have destroyed it from the three-mile post back to the bridge 
>oot twelve miles). In anticipation of leaving this country, I am con- 
imog the destruction of their railroads, and at this moment have two 
nnona and the cavalry at work breaking up the Gulf Railroad from the 
feeohee to the Altamaha ; so that, even if I do not take Savannah, I will 
kve it in a bad way. But I still hope that events will give me time to 
ce Savannah, even if I have to assault with some loss. I am satisfied that, 
leas we take it, the gunboats never will, for they can make no impros- 
A npon the batteries which guard every approach from the sea. I have 
junt belief that, when Colonel Babcock reaches yon, you will delay oper- 
ions long enough to enable me to succeed here. With Savannah in our 
«DOBBion, at some future time if not now, we can punish South Carolina as 
e deaervea, and as thousands of the people in Georgia hoped we would do. 
ionncerely believe that the whole United States, North and South, would 
foioe to have this army turned loose on South Carolina, to devastate that 
ate in the manner we have done in Georgia, and it would have a direct 
id immediate bearing on your campaign in Virginia. 
I have the honpr tol)e your obedient servant, 

W. T. Shebman, Major- General United States Army. 

Ab soon as the army had reached Savannah^ and had opene .1 
immtinication with the fleet, I endeavored to ascertain what 
id transpired in Tennessee since our departure. We receive I 
IT letters and files of newspapers, which contained full a?- 
^nnts of all the events there up to about the 1st of December. 
JB before described, General Hood had three full corps of infau- 
y — S. D. Lee's, A. P. Stewart's, and Cheatham's, at Florence, 
Jabama — ^with Forrest's corps of cavalry, numbering in the 
;gregate about forty-five thousand men. General Thomas was 
I Nashville, Tennessee, quietly engaged in reorganizing his 

214 THE MARCH TO THE SEA. [1864. 

anny out of the Bomewhat broken forces at his disposal. He 
had posted his only two regular corps, the Fourth and Twenty- 
third, nnder the general conunand of Major-Gteneral J. M. Scho- 
field, at Pulaski, directly in front of Florence, with the three 
brigades of cavalry (ELatch, Croxton, and Capron), commanded 
by Major-Grenend Wilson, watching closely for Hood's initiative. 

This force aggregated about thirty thousand men, was there- 
fore inferior to the enemy; and General Schofield was in- 
structed, in case the enemy made a general advance, to fall 
back slowly toward Nashville, fighting, till he should be re- 
enforced by Greneral Thomas in person. Hood's movement was 
probably hurried by reason of my advance into Georgia ; for 
on the ITth his infantry columns marched from Florence in 
the direction of Waynesboro', turning Schofield's position at 
Pulaski. The latter at once sent his trains to the rear, and on 
the 21st fell back to Columbia, Tennessee. Oeneral Hood fol- 
lowed up this movement, skirmished lightly with Schofield at 
Columbia, b^;ax: the passage of Duck River, below the town, 
and Cheatham's corps reached the vicinity of Spring Hill, 
whither General Schofield had sent General Stanley, with two 
of his divisions, to cover the movement of his trains. During 
the night of November 29th General Schofield passed Spring 
Hill with his trains and army, and took post at Franklin, on the 
Si>uth side of Ilarpeth River. General Hood now attaches 
serious blame to General Cheatham for not attacking General 
Schofield in flank while in motion at Spring Hill, for he was 
bivouacked within eight himdred yards of the road at the time 
of the passage of our army. General Schofield reached Frank- 
lin on the morning of November 30th, and posted his army in 
f n;>nt of the to^vn, where some rifle-intrenchments had been con- 
st ruettnl in advance. He had the two corps of Stanley and Cox 
(Fourth and Twonty-thinl), with Wilson's cavalry on his flanks, 
and sent his trains behind the Harpeth. 

Genoi*al Hood closed upon him the same day, and assaulted 
his jx>sition with vehemence, at one time breaking the line and 
wounding General Stanley seriously ; but our men were veterans, 
CMx>l and deternuneil, and fought magnificently. The rebel 


officen led their men in person to the several persistent assaults, 
oontinning the battle far into the night, when they drew oS, 
beaten and discomfited. 

Their loss was very severe, especially in general officers ; 
among them Oenerals Clebnm and Adams, division commanders. 
Hood's loss on that day was afterward ascertained to be (Thomas's 
report) : Bnried on the field, seventeen hundred and fifty ; left 
in liofipital at Franklin, thirty-eight hundred ; and seven hundred 
and two prisoners captured and held : aggregate, sbc thousand 
two hundred and fifty-two. General Schofield's loss, reported 
ofiSciaUy, was one hundred and eighty-nine killed, one thousand 
and thirty-three wounded, and eleven hundred and four prisoners 
or missing: aggregate, twenty-three hundred and twenty-six. 
The next day General Schofield crossed the Harpeth without 
trouble, and f eU back to the defenses of Xashvillc. 

Meantime General Thomas had organized the employes of 
the Quartermaster's Department into a corps, commanded by 
the chief-quartermaster, General J. L. Donaldson, and placed 
them in the fortifications of Nashville, under the general di- 
rection of Major-General Z. B. Tower, now of the United 
States Engineers. He had also received the two veteran divi- 
sions of the Sixteenth Corps, under General A. J. Smith, long 
abaent and long expected ; and he had drawn from Chattanooga 
and Decatur (Alabama) the divisions of Steedman and of R. S. 
Granger. These, with General Schofield's army and about ten 
thousand good cavalry, under General J. II. Wilson, constituted 
a strong army, capable not only of defending Nashville, but of 
beating Hood in the open field. Yet Thomas remained inside 
of Kashville, seemingly passive, until General Hood had closed 
upon him and had intrenched his position. 

General Thomas had furthermore held fast to the railroaa 
leading from Nashville to Chattanooga, leaving strong guards at 
its principal points, as at Murfreesboro', Deckerd, Stevenson, 
Bridgeport, Whitesides, and Chattanooga. At Murfreesboro' 
the division of Bousseau was reenforccd and strengthened up to 
about eight thousand men. 

At that time the weather was cold and sleety, the gi'ound 

216 THE MARCH TO THE SEA. [1864. 

was covered with ice and snow, and both parties for a time 
rested on the defensive. Thus matters stood at If ashville, while 
we were closing down on Savannah, in the early part of Decem- 
ber, 1864; and the country, as well as General Grant, was 
alaimed at the seeming passive conduct of General Thomas ; and 
General Grant at one time considered the situation so dangerous 
that he thought of going to Nashville in person, but General 
John A. Logan, happening to be at City Point, was sent out to 
supersede General Thomas ; luckily for the latter, he acted in 
time, gained a magnificent victory, and thus escaped so terrible 
a fate. 

On the 18th of December, at my camp by the side of the 
plank-road, eight miles back of Savannah, I received General 
Hardee's letter declining to surrender, when nothing remained 
but to assault. The ground was difficult, and, as all former as- 
saults had proved so bloody, I concluded to make one more 
effort to completely surround Savannah on all sides, so as further 
to excite Hardee's f ears^ and, in case of success, to capture the 
whole of his army. We had already completely invested the 
place on the north, west, and south, but there remained to the 
enemy, on the east, the use of the old dike or plank-road lead- 
ing into South Carolina, and I knew that Hardee would have a 
pontoon-bridge across the river. On examining my maps, I 
thouffht that the division of John P. Hatch, belonging to Gen- 
eral Foster's command, might be moved from its then position 
at Broad River, by water, down to Bluffton, from which it could 
reach this plank-road, fortify and hold it — at some risk, of 
course, because Hardee could avail himself of his central posi- 
tion to fall on this detachment with his whole army. I did not 
want to make a mistake like " Ball's Bluff " at that period of 
the war ; so, taking one or two of my personal staff, I rode back 
to King's Bridge, leaving with Generals Howard and Slocum 
orders to make all possible preparations, but not to attack, dur- 
ing my two or three days' absence ; and there I took a boat for 
Wassaw Sound, whence Admiral Dahlgren conveyed me in his 
own boat (the Harvest Moon) to Hilton Head, where I represented 
the matter to General Foster, and he promptly agreed to g^ve 

1864.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 017 

his personal attention to it. During the night of the 20th we 
started back, the wind blowing strong, Admiral Dahlgi-en 
ordered the pilot of the Harvest Moon to run into Tybee, and 
to work his way through to Wassaw Sound and the Ogeechee 
Eiver by the Eomney Marshes. We were caught by a low tide 
and stuck in the mud. After laboring some time, the admiral 
ordered out his barge ; in it we puUed through this intricate 
and shallow channel, and toward evening of Deceml^er 21st we 
discovered, coming toward us, a tug, called the Red Legs, be- 
longing to the Quartermaster's Department, with a staff-officer 
on board, bearing letters from Colonel Dayton to myself and the 
admiral, reporting that the city of Savannah had been found 
evacuated on the morning of December 21st, and was then in 
our possession. General Hardee had crossed the Savannah River 
by a pontoon-bridge, carrying off his men and light artillery, 
blowing up his iron-clads and navy-yard, but leaving for us all 
the heavy guns, stores, cotton, railway-cars, steamboats, and an 
immense amount of public and private property. Admiral 
Dahlgren concluded to go toward a vessel (the Sonoma) of his 
blockading fleet, which lay at anchor near Beaulieu, and I 
transferred to the Red Legs, aud hastened up the Ogeechee 
River to King's Bridge, whence I rode to my camp that same 
night. I there learned that, early on the morning of December 
21st, the skirmishers had detected the absence of the enemy, and 
had occupied his lines simultaneously along their whole extent ; 
but the left flank (Slocum), especially Geary's division of the 
Twentieth Corps, claimed to have been the first to reach the 
heart of the city. 

Generals Slocum and Howard moved their headquarters at 
once into the city, leaving the bulk of their troops iu camps 
outside. On the morning of December 22d I followed with 
my own headquarters, and rode down Bull Street to the cus- 
tom^iouse, from the roof of which we had an extensive view over 
the city, the river, and the vast extent of marsh and rice-fields 
on the South Carolina side. The navy-yard, and the wreck of 
the iron-clad ram Savannah, were still smouldering, but all else 
looked quiet enough. Turning back, we rode to the Pulaski 


Ilote:, \7l1i.I1 I had known in years long gone, and fonnc^ ^^ 
kept I'V a Veniiont man with a lame leg, who used to be a d^^^^ 
in iLe St. Louis Ilotel, Xew Orleans, and I inqnired about tz^ ^^ 
cap:ii::ty . •: hotel for headquarters. Ho was very ansious ^ 
h:;ve u-i :■ T L-arderSj but I soon explained to him that we hac^ * 
f r.ll :i:v; v-s eqv.ipment along, and that we were not in the habit of 
paviii ^: bc':ml ; that one wing of the building would suffice &- 0^ 
our use, while I would allow him to keep an hotel for the accoi 
modation of ollieers and gentlemen in the remainder. I thi 
dispatched an oliicer to look around for a liverj-fitable th — :=*** 
could accommodate our horses, and, while waiting there, an En_ — -g" 
lish gentleman, Mr. Charles Green, came and said that he h^^^ 
a line house completely furnished, for which he had no u d - ^°^ » 
and oScred it as headquarters. lie explained, moreover, tim^ -^^ 
General Howard had informed him, the day before, that I wod^^^^ 
want Lis house for headquarters. At first I felt strongly dit -^^ 
inclined to make use of any private dwelling, lest complaint' -•^ 
should arise of damage and loss of furniture, and so expressc"^!^^ 
myself to Mr. Green ; but, after riding about the city, and finS:^ -**' 
ii^jr Lis Louse so spacious, so convenient, with large yard anc^ -^^ 
s::.b»i:i^, I accepted Lis oiier, and occupied that house during ^^S 
Li:r sMv in Savauiiah. He onlv reserved for himself the use o:-*-^^^^^ 
a cou]'le of roi>ins al>ove tlie dining-room, and we had all else--^^^'^^ 
and a nu'^t oxcellont liouse it was in all respects. 

I was disappointed that Hardee had escaped with his amiy,^ ^» 
but on tlie whole we had reason to be content with the sub — ^-^ 
stantial fniits of victory. The Savannah Hiver was found to^:^^^-^ 
be badly obstructed l>y torpedoes, and by log piers stretched^E^ 
across tlie cLannel below the city, which piers were filled 
the cobble stones that formerly paved the streets. Admiral- 
l^aLlgrou was extremely active, visited mo repeatedly in the 
citv, while Lis licet still watcLed Cliarleston, and all the avenues. 
for the bKx'kade-mnncrs tliat infested tLo coast, which were 
notoriouslv owned and mana^red bv Endishmcn, who used the 
island of Xew Providence (Nassau) as a sort of entrepot. One 
of these snuill blockade-runners came into Savannah after we 
were in full jx»sscssion, and the master did not discover his mifr 

3861] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 219 

take till he came ashore to visit the cnstom-house. Of course 
his vessel fell a prize to the navy. A heavy force was at once 
set to work to remove the torpedoes and obstructions in the 
main channel of the river, and, from that time forth, Savannah 
became the great depot of supply for . the troops operating in 
that quarter. 

Meantime, on the 15th and 16th of December, were fought, 
in front of Nashville, the great battles in which General 
Thomas so nobly fulfilled his promise to ruin Hood, the details 
of which are fully given in his own official reports, long since 
published. Bumors of these great victories reached us at Sa- 
vannah by piecemeal, but his official report came on the 24:tli 
of December, with a letter from General Grant, giving in gen- 
eral terms the events up to the 18th, and I wrote at once 
through my chief of staff. General "Webster, to General Thomas, 
complimenting him in the highest terms. His brilliant victory 
at Nashville was necessary to mine at Savannah to make a com- 
plete whole, and this fact was perfectly comprehended by Mi*. 
lincoln, who recognized it fully in his personal letter of Decem- 
ber 26th, hereinbefore quoted at length, and which I also claimed 
at the time, in my Special Field Order No. 6, of January 8, 
1865, here given : 

[Special Field Order 2fo. 6.] 

Hkadquabtbbs Miutabt Division of the Mississippi, ) 
or TUB Fold, Savanitah, Georgia, January ti, 18G5. ) 

The general coininanding announces to the troops composing the Mill- 
torj IMyision of the Mississippi that he has received from the President of 
the United States, and from Lieatenant-General Grant, letters conveying 
their high sense and appreciation of the campaign jnst closed, rcsnlting in 
the capture of Savannah and the defeat of Hood^s army in Tennessee. 

In order that all may understand the importance of events, it is proper 
to revert to the situation of affairs in September last. We held Atlanta, a 
dty of little value to ua, but so important to the enemy that Mr. Davis, 
the head of the rebellious faction in the South, visited his army near Pal- 
metto, and commanded it to regain the place and also to ruin and destroy 
Up by a series of measures which he thought would be effectual. That 
anny, by a rapid march, gained our railroad near Big Shanty, and after- 
ward about Dalton. We pursued it, but it moved so rapidly that we could 
Dot overtake it| and General Hood led his army successfully far over 

220 TnE Ai^vRcn ro the sea. [J^^ 

toward Mississippi, in hope to decoy ob cat of Georgia. Bat we wer^ ^ 
thus to bo led away by him, and preferred to lead and control eyents ' 

selves. Generals Tliomas and Scbofield, commanding the departmen*^^ 
our rear, returned to their posts and prepared to decoy General Hood ^ 
their meshes, wliilo we caino on to complete the original journey, 
quietly and deliberately destroyed Atlanta, and all the railroads which 
enemy had used to carry on war against us, occupied his State capital, ^^^ ^ 
then captured his commercial capital, which had- been so strongly fortifV^-^ 
from the sea as to defy approach from that quarter. Almost at the x* — *"^ 
ment of our victorious entry into Savannah came the welcome and expect' ^2ted 
news that our comrades in Teunessee had also fulfilled nobly and well tfa* tf^^ 
part, had decoyed General Uood to Nashville and then tamed on him, defe»> ^^^ 
ing his army thoroughly, capturing all his artillery, great numbers of prisocr^^^^^' 
ers, and were still pursuing the fragments down in Alabama. So complete^'* *^ ^ 
success in military operations, extending over half a continent^ is an achiev-g ^ ^ 
ment that entitles it to a place in the military history of the world. TIK>^-^® 
armies serving in Georgia and Tennessee, as well as the local garrisons c^ ^ 
Decatur, Bridgeport, Ohattanooga, and Hurfreesboro*, are alike entitled W ^ 
the common honors, and each regiment may inscribe on its colorSi at plesr ^*''^^ ^ 
ure, the word " Savannah " or " Nashville." The general commanding:'- **°' 
embraces, in the same general success, the operations of the cavalry unde^ £3ie 
Generals Stoneman, Burbridge, and Gillem, that penetrated into Soathwea^"^^ ^ 
Virginia, and paralyzed the efforts of the enemy to disturb the peace sn^ gi^^J^^ 
safety of East Tennessee. Instead of being put on the defensiTe, we hav***^^ ** 
at all points assumed the bold offensive, and have completely thwarted th^-^^ 
designs of tlie enemies of our country. 

By ortler of Mjyor-Oeneral TT. T. Sherman, 

L. M. Dayton, AUe-de^Camp. 

Here terniinated tlic "March to the Sea," and I only add a ^^^^ 
few letters, selected out of many, to illustrate the general feeling "^ 
of rejoicing throughout the country at the time. I only re- 
garded the march from Atlantxi to Savannah as a "shift of 
base," as tlic transfer of a strong army, which had no opponent, 
and had liiiished its then work, from the interior to a point on 
the sea-coast, from which it could achieve other important re- 
sults. I considered this march as a means to an end, and not as 
an essential act of war. Still, then, as now, the march to the 
tea was generally regarded as sometliing extraordinary, some- 
thing anomalous, something out of the usual order of events; 
wliei-eas, in fact, I simply moved from Atlanta to Savannah^ ai 




me atep in the direction of Bidunocd, & movemeat that liad to 
M met and defeated,^ or the war was neceeaarily at an end. 

Were I to expiesa mj measore of the relative importance of 
he march to the sea, and of that from Savannah northward, I 
ronld place the former at one, and the latter at ten, or tlie 

I noT (Hose this long chapter bj giving a tabular statement 
E the loaees daring the march, and tbe nmnber of prisonera 
iptored. The property captnred consiGted of boreea and mules 
J the thousand, and of qoantitiee of Bnbeistence stores that 
jgregate very large, bnt may be meaenred with sofficient 
xancj by asscming that eixty-five thonsand men obtained 
bimdant food for about forty days, and thirty-five thousand 
Qunals were fed for a like period, so as to reach Savannah 
1 q>tendid flesh and condition. I also add a few of the more 
nportaat letters that passed between Generals Grant, Hallcck, 
nd myself, which illustrate our opinions at that stage of the 

nuBmr or oucaltibs akd pmBomBB 





T I 























intrr DlTirion, Erlf[««u-Q*oo«l J. KJl- 















L. U. D&TTOK, Auutant Adjutant- General. 

Bj^ O tim v l SnEBiuK (oia ^Itm Mead). 

QtMMEAL : Uentenant-General Grant informs me that, in his last dispatch 
■t to yon, lie niggeatod tbo transfer of joar infimtrj to Biclunond. lie 


now wishes me to say that yoa will retain your entire force, at least for ^^ 
present, and, with such assistance as may be given yon by General F^'^^ 
and Admiral Dahlgren, operate from sach base as yon may establial^ ^ 
the coast. General Foster will obey sach instmctions as may be give^^^^ 


Shonld yon have captnred Savannah, it is thonght that by transfer"^:^^ 
the water-batteries to the land side that place may be made a good d^E^^ 
and base of operations on Angosta, Branchville, or Charleston. If ^* 
vannah should not be captured, or if captored and not deemed soit^e^^' 
for this purpose, perhaps Beaufort would serve as a depot. As the rel 
have probably removed their most valuable property from Augusta, perhr: 
BrAuchville would be the most important point at which to strike in o i ^ ^ 
to sever all connection between Virginia and the Southwestern Railroad..^ 

General Grant^s wishes, however, are, that this whole matter of j^^^^ 
futore actions should be entirely left to your discretion. 

We can send you from here a number of complete batteries of fie ■-^^* 
artillery, with or without horses, as yon may desire; also, as soon 
General Thomas can spare them, all the fragments, convalescents, and 
loughed men of your army. It is reported that Thomas defeated H( 
yesterday, near Nashville, but we have no particulars nor official 
telegraphic communication being interrupted by a heavy storm. 

Our last advices from you was Greneral Howard's note, announcing h 
approach to Savannah. Tours truly, 

11. TT. Ualleck, JIajor-Generaly Chi^-of-Staff, 

IIeadquastebs or the Abmt, \ 
Wajbho^gton, Deeembtr IS, 1864. ) 

Mdjor- General W. T. Sheeman, Satannah {tia IlilUm Iltad). 

My dear General : Yours of the 13th, by Mi^jor Anderson, is just 
ceivod. I congratulate you on your splendid success, and shall very sooiu 
exjH?ct to hoar of the crowninjr work of your campaign — ^the capture of 
Savannah. Your march will stand out prominently as the great one of this 
(Treat war. When Savannah falls, then for another wide swath through 
the centre of the Confederacy. But I will not anticipate. General Grant 
is expected here this morning, and will probably write you his own views. 

I do not loarn from your letter, or from Migor Anderson, that yon are 
in want of any thing which we have not provided at Hilton Head. Think- 
ing it probable that you mijzht want more iield-artillery, I had prepared 
several batteries, but tlie great difficulty of foraging horses on the sea-coast 
will prevent our sending any unless you actually need them. The hay-crop 
this year is short, and the Quartermaster's Department has great difficulty 
in pnxniring a supply for our animals. 

General Thomas has defeated Hood, near Xashville, and it is hoped that 

1864.: THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 223 

he will eompletelj crush Ms armj. Brockenridge, at lost acconntB, was 
trjing to form a jxmctioii near Mnrfreesboro', but, as Thomas is between 
them, Breckenridge must either retreat or be defeated. 

Gleneral Rosecrans made very bad work of it in Missouri, allowing Price 
with a small force to overrnn the State and destroy millions of property. 

Orders haye been issued for all officers and detachments having three 
months or more to serve, to rejoin your army via Savannah. Those having 
less than three months to serve, will be retained by General Thomas. 

Should you capture Charleston, I hope that by some accident the place 
may be destroyed, and, if a little salt should be sown upon its site, it may 
prevent the growth of future crops of nullification and secession. 

Yours truly, 

H. "W. Halleoe, Major- General^ Chief -of -Staff. 


Hhadquabters Abioss 07 THS UinTBD States, ) 
WASHiNQTOir, D. C, Jkcemher 18, 1864. ) 

To Major- General W. T. Sherman, commanding Military Division of the 

Mt dsab Genebal : I have just received and read, I need not tell you 
with how much gratification, your letter to General Halleck. I congratulate 
you and the brave officers and men under your command on the successful 
termination of your most brilliant campaign. I never had a doubt of the 
result. "When appreheusions for your safety were expressed by the Presi- 
dent, I assured him with the army you had, and you in command of it, 
there was no danger but you would strike bottom on salt-water some place ; 
that I would not feel the same security — in fact, would not have intrusted 
the expedition to any other living commander. * 

It has been very hard work to get Thomas to attack Hood. I gave him 
the most peremptory order, and had started to go there myself, before he got 
off. He has done magnificently, however, since he started. Up to last 
night, five thousand prisoners and forty-nine pieces of captured artillery, 
besides many wagons and innumerable small-arms, had been received in 
Nashville. This is exclusive of the enemy^s loss at Franklin, which 
amoonted to thirteen general officers killed, wounded, and captured. The 
enemy probably lost five thousand men at Franklin, and ten thousand in 
the last three days' operations. Breckenridge is said to be making for Mur- 

I think he is in a most excellent place. Stoneman has nearly wiped out 
John Morgan's old command, and five days ago entered Bristol. I did 
think the best thing to do was to bring the greater part of your army here, 
sad wipe out Lee. The turn afiairs now seem to be taking has shaken me 

.'.> THE SEA. 


. li Til ay not Accomplish more toward 
.-• iii^lit here, esjicciallj as I am infom«^' 
.. would take about two months to ^'=^ 
...vFo are for ocean transportation. 
.. what ou^ht to bo done, and what ^^ 
.i.suu of Savannah, it certainly will ^^'^^ 
.. .. or jrivo us nearly the whole South. • 

■ : ^ jC'-'ing out of Virginia, and if the * 
:. -iiiiiond to bo the last place snrrend 
J -.veil to indalgo him until we get 

•>• army again upon the splendid resul 
:i is not read of in past history, I sub 
..^0, your friend, 

U. S. Gkaxt, Lieutenant' Gen€rc 




. :rv ToiAT, ViBoiNiA, V^ctmUr ilG, lso4. 

. %-•.' 1 

<Kivanna\ Geortjia, 

^:vsiing letter of the 22d inst., brought 
. s >catl*, is just at hand. As the major st 
■t-n;* at present than simply acknowledge 
..^ii:Ji, with all its immense stores, must 
A'l well here. 

r. S. Oka XT, LlcuUnant-Genertil^ 







is c 

in w 




will pr 
this ye.-. 


in procu 

. . K :* Mii.iTAr.T Divi!»ii.)y np the Mipsuisim. \ 
>..-. vNXAii, Glorgli, JJu\mbtr *-'4, ls04. ) 

.\\\ t V/y Po in f , 1 "irf/ifi ia, 

Scomber IStli is just receired. I feel vei 

..o handsome commendation you pay m^ 

..>» vTouvey to the olhcers and men the sub^ 

t !j»ive modified your former orders, fur I 
lb >o:i would very much disturb the unitjr 
^ vriVot. 

.^., wliioh T have luTct«»fore reported, com- 

, „ i:id fultUls a groat i)art of your instruc- 

u wUsmantliug the rebel forts wliich bear 

^.fticrriug the heavy ordnance and ammn- 

x,a Head, whore they can bo more easily 

1864.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA. 225 

The rebel inner lines are well adapted to onr purpose, and with slight 
modifications can be held bj a comparatively small force ; and in about ten 
dajs I expect to be ready to sally forth again. I feel no doubt whatever as 
to onr future plans. I have thought them over so long and well that they 
appear as clear as daylight. I left Augusta untouched on purpose, because 
the enemy will be in doubt as to my objective point, after we cross the Sa- 
vannah River, whether it be Augusta or Charleston, and will naturally 
divide his forces. I will then move either on Branchville or Columbia, by 
any curved line that gives us the best supplies, breaking up in our course 
as much railroad as possible ; then, ignoring Charleston and Augusta both, I 
would occupy Columbia and Camden, pausing there long enough to observe 
the effect. I would then strike for the Charleston & Wilmington Railroad, 
somewhere between the Santee and Cape Fear Rivers, and, if possible, com- 
municate with the fleet under Admiral Dahlgren (whom I find a most 
agreeable gentleman, accommodating himself to our wishes and plans). 
Then I would favor an attack on Wilmington, in the belief that Porter and 
Butler will fail in their present undertakmg. Charleston is now a mere 
desolated wreck, and is hardly worth the time it would take to starve it out. 
Still, I am aware that, historically and politically, much importance is at- 
tached to the place, and it may be that, apart from its military importance, 
both yon and the Administration may prefer I should give it more attention ; 
and it would be well for you to give me some general idea on that subject, 
for otherwise I would treat it as I have expressed, as a point of little impor- 
tance, after all its railroads leading into the interior have been destroyed or 
occupied by us. But, on the hypothesis of ignoring Charleston and taking 
Wilmington, I would then favor a movenient direct on Raleigh. The game 
is then up with Lee, unless he comes out of Richmond, avoids you and 
fights me ; in which case I should reckon on your being on his heels. Now 
that Hood is used up by Thomas, I feel disposed to bring the matter to an 
issue as quick as possible. I feel confident that I can break up the whole 
rulroad system of South Carolina and North Carolina, and .be on the Ro- 
anoke, either at Raleigh or Weldon, by the time spring fairly opens ; and, if 
joa feel confident that you can whip Lee outside of his intrenchments, I 
^eel eqnally confident that I can handle him in the open country. 

One reason why I would ignore Charleston is this : that I believe Hardee 
will rednce the garrison to a small force, with plenty of provisions ; I know 
that the neck back of Charleston can be made impregnable to assault, and 
we will hardly have time for siege operations. 

I will have to leave in Savannah a garrison, and, if Thomas can spare 
them, I would like to have all detachments, convalescents, etc., belonging to 
these four corps, sent forward at once. I do not want to cripple Thomas, 
because I regard his operations as all-important, and I have ordered him tO' 
jmrsne Hood down into Alabama, trusting to the country for supplies. 


226 THE MABOH TO THE SEA. [1864, 

I reviewed one of my corps to^j, and sball continue to review the 
whole armj. I do not like to boast, but believe this army has a confi- 
dence in itself that makes it almost invincible. I wish yon conld ron 
down and see ns ; it would have a good effect, and show to both armies 
that thej are acting on a common plan. The weather is now cool and 
pleasant, and the general health very good. Tonr true friend, 

W. T. Shebman, MajoT' General, 

Headqijabters Bf ilitabt DiyinoH' of tbm Mimfleippi, { 
js THE Field, Bayaosam, Jhe&mXmr 24, 1864. ) 

Majar-Oeneral H. W. Halleok, Chitf-of -Staffs Washington, D. C. 

General: I had the pleasure of receiving your two letters of the 16th 
and 18th instant to-day, and feel more than nsaaUy flattered by the high 
encomiums you have passed on our recent campaign, which is now complete 
by the occupation of Savannah. 

I am also very glad that General Grant has changed his mind about 
embarking my troops for James Biver, leaving me free to make the broad 
swath you describe through South and North Carolina, and still more grat- 
ified at the news from Thomas, in Tennessee, because it fulfills my plans, 
which contemplated his being able to dispose of Hood, in case he ventured 
north of the Tennessee River. So, I think, on the whole, I can chuckle 
over Je£ Davis^s disappointment in not turning my Atlanta campaign into 
a ** Moscow disaster." 

I have Just finished a long letter to General Grant, and have explained 
to him that we are engaged in shifting our base from the Ogeechee to 
the Savannah River, dismantling all the forts made by the enemy to bear 
upon the salt-water channels, transferring the heavy ordnance, etc., to Fort 
Pulaski and Hilton Head, and in remodeling the enemy^s interior lines to suit 
our future plans and purposes. I have also laid down the programme for a 
campaign which I can make this winter, and which will put me in the spring 
on the Roanoke, in direct communication with General Grant on James 
River. In general terms, my plan is to turn over to Greneral Foster the 
city of Savannah, to sally forth with my army resupplied, cross the Savan- 
nah, feign on Charleston and Augusta, but strike between, breaking en route 
the Charleston & Augusta Railroad, also a large part of that from Branch- 
ville and Camden toward North Carolina, and then rapidly to move for some 
point of the railroad from Charleston to Wilmington, between the Santee 
and Capo Fear Rivers ; then, communicating with the fleet in the neighbor- 
hood of Georgetown, I would turn upon Wilmington or Charleston, accord- 
ing to the importance of either. I rather prefer Wilmington, as a live place, 
over Charleston, which is dead and unimportant when its railroad commu- 
nications are broken. I take it for granted that the present movement on 
Wilmington will fail. If I should determine to take Charleston, I would 

1864.] THE MARCH TO THE SEA.. 227 

tnmieross the country (whioh I have hunted over many a time) from Santee 
to Mount Pleasant, throwing one wing on the peninsnla between the Ashley 
and Oooper. After accomplishing one or other of these ends, I would make 
a bee-line for Baleigh or Weldon, when Lee wonld be forced to come out 
of Bichmond, or acknowledge himself beaten. He would, I think, by the 
use of the Danville Railroad, throw himself rapidly between me and Grant, 
leaving Richmond in the hands of the latter. This would not alarm me, 
Tori hare an army which I think can manoeuvre, and I would force him to 
ittack me at a disadvantage, always under the supposition that Grant would 
t>e on bis heels; and, if the worst come to the worst, I can fight my way 
iown to Albermarle Sound, or Newbem. 

I think the time has come now when we should attempt the boldest 
novefl, and my experience is, that they are easier of execution than more 
timid ones, because the enemy is disconcerted by them — ^as, for instance, my 
recent campaign. 

I also doubt the wisdom of concentration beyond a certain extent, for the 
roads of this country limit the amount of men that can be brought to bear 
in any one battle, and I do not believe that any one general can handle 
more than sixty thousand men in battle. 

I think our campaign of the last month, as well as every step I take from 
this point northward, is as much a direct attack upon Lee's army as though 
we were operating within the sound of his artillery. 

I am very anxious that Thomas should follow up his success to the very 
atmoft point. My orders to him before I left Kingston were, after beating 
Hood, to follow him as far as Columbus, Mississippi, or Selma, Alabama, 
both of which lie in districts of country which are rich in com and meat. 

I attach more importance to these deep incisions into the enemy's 
country, because this war differs from European wars in this particular: we 
are not only fighting hostile armies, but a hostile people, and must make old 
ind yonng, rich and poor, feel the hard hand of war^ as well as Uieir organ- 
ised armies. I know that this recent movement of mine through Georgia 
bas had a wonderful effect in this respect. Thousands who hod been de- 
sdred by their lying newspapers to believe that we were being whipped all 
the time now realize the truth, and have no appetite for a repetition of the 
lame experience. To be sure, Jeff. Davis has his people under pretty good 
iiidpline, but I think faith in him is much shaken in Georgia, and before 
we have done with her South Carolina will not be quite so tempestuous. 

I wiU bear in mind your hint as to Charleston, and do not think '^ salt ^* 
wQl be necessary. When I move, the Fifteenth Corps will be on the right 
of the right wing, and their position wiU naturally bring them into Charles- 
ton first; and, if you have watched the history of that corps, you will have 
ramsiked that they generally do their work pretty well. The truth is, 
the whole army is burning with an insatiable desire to wreak vengeance 

228 THE MAKCE TO THE SEA. [1804. 

upon South Oaroliiia. I almost tremble at her fate, bat feel that she de- 
serves all that seems in store for her. 

Many and many a person in Georgia asked me why we did not go to Sontl: 

Carolina ; and, when I answered that we were en route for that State, th< 

invariable reply was, '^ Well, if yon will make those people feel the ntmosi 

severities of war, we will pardon yon for yoar desolation of Georgia.^' 

\ I look upon Colombia as quite as bad as Charleston, and I doubt if w( 

^ shall spare the publio buildings there as we ^d at MiUedgeTiUe. 

I have been so busy lately that I have not yet made my official report 
and I think I had better wait until I get my subordinate reports before at 
tempting it, as 1 am anxious to explain clearly not only the reasons for ever} 
step, but the amount of execution done, and this I cannot do until I get th< 
subordinate reports ; for we marched the whole distance in four or mor< 
columns, and, of course, I could only be present with one, and general!} 
that one engaged in destroying railroads. This work of destmction wai 
performed better than usual, because I had an engineer-regiment, providec 
with claws to twist the bars after being heated. Such bars can never b< 
used again, and the only way in which a railroad line can be reconstructec 
across Georgia is, to make a new road from Fairbum Station (twenty-foui 
miles southwest of Atlanta) to Madison, a distance of one hundred miles: 
and, before that can be done, I propose to be on the road from Augusta U. 
Charleston, which is a continuation of the same. I felt somewhat disap^ 
pointed at Hordee^s escape, but really am not to blame. I moved as 
quickly as possible to close up the "Union Causeway," but intervenins 
obstacles wore such that, before I could get troops on the road, Hardee 
had slipped out. Still, I know that the men that were in Savannah will be 
lost in a measure to Jeflf. Davis, for the Georgia troops, under G. "VT. Smith, 
declared they would not fight in South Carolina, and they have gone north, 
en route for Augusta, and I have reason to believe the North Carolina 
troops have gone to Wilmington ; in other words, they are scattered. I 
have reason to believe that Beauregard was present in Savannah at the time 
of its evacuation, and think that he and Hardee are now in Charleston, 
making preparations for what they suppose will be mj next step. 

Please say to the President that I have received his kind message 
(through Colonel Markland), and feel thankful for his high favor. If I 
disappoint him in the future, it shall not bo from want of zeal or love to the 

From you I expect a full and frank criticism of my plans for the future, 
which may enable me to correct errors before it is too late. I do not wish 
to be rash, but want to give my rebel friends no chance to accuse us of 
want of enterprise or courage. 

Assuring you of my high personal respect, I remain, as ever, your friend, 

W. T. Shebma^, Major-General, 




[General Order No. 8.] 

Wab Depabtment, Ad/utajit-General's Office, ) 
Washinqton, January 14, 1865. ) 

The following resolution of the Senate and House of Representatives is 
published to the army : 

[Public Resolution — No. 4.] 

Joint resolution tendering the thanks of the people and of Congress to 
Migor-Greneral 'William T. Sherman, and the officers and soldiers of his 
command, for their gallant conduct in their late brilliant movement 
through G^rgia. 

Be it rciohed hy the Senate and Houee of JRepresentatives of the United 
Statee of America in Congrees assembled^ That the thanks of the people and 
of the Congress of the United States are due and are hereby tendered to 
Idjor-General William T. Sherman, and through him to the officers and 
men under his command, for their gallantry and good conduct in their late 
campaign from Chattanooga to Atlanta, and the triumphal march thence 
.through Georgia to Savannah, terminating in the capture and occupation 
of that city ; and that the President cause a copy of this joint resolution 
to be engrossed and forwarded to M^or-General Sherman. Approved, 
January 10, 1865. 

By order of the Secretary of "War, 

W. A. Nionoia, Assistant Adjutant- General, 



The city of Savannah was an old place, and nsnallj ac- 
counted a handsome one. Its houses were of brick or frame, 
with large yards, ornamented with shrubbery and flowers ; its 
streets perfectly regular, crossing each other at right angles ; and 
at many of the intersections were small indosures in the nature 
of parks. These streets and parks were lined with the hand- 
somest shade-trees of which I have knowledge, viz., the willow- 
leaf live-oak, evergreens of exquisite beauty ; and these certainly 
entitled Savannah to its reputation as a handsome town more 
than the houses, which, though comfortable, would hardly make 
a display on Fifth Avenue or the Boulevard Haussmann of Paris. 
The city was built on a plateau of sand about forty feet above the 
level of the sea, abutting against the river, leaving room along 
its margin lor a street of stores and warehouses. The custom- 
house, court-house, post-oflSce, etc., were on the plateau above. 
In rear of Savannah was a large park, with a fountain, and be- 
tween it and the court-house was a handsome monument, erected 
to the memory of Count Pulaski, who fell in 1779 in the assault 
made on the city at the time it was held by the English during 
the Eevolutionary "War. Outside of Savannah there was very 
little to interest a stranger, except the cemetery of Bonaven- 
tura, and the ride along the "Wilmington Channel by way of 
Thunderbolt, where might be seen some groves of the majestic 
live-oak trees, covered with gray and funereal moss, which were 


ily Bublime ii^ grandeur, but gloomy after a few days' camp- 
g under them. 

Within an hour of taking up my quarters in Mr. Green's 
>use, Mr. A. G. Browne, of Salem, Massachusetts, United States 
reasury agent for the Department of the South, made his ap- 
earance to claim possession, in the name of the Treasury De- 
partment, of all captured cotton, rice, buildings, etc. Having 
ise for these articles ourselves, and having fairly earned them, I 
lid not feel inclined to surrender possession, and explained to 
xim that the quartermaster and commissary could manage them 
ttiore to my liking than he ; but I agreed, after the proper in- 
ventories had been prepared, if there remained any thing for 
Which we had no special use, I would turn it over to him. It was 
then known that in the warehouses were stored at least twenty- 
five thousand bales of cotton, and in the forts one hundred and 
fifty large, heavy sea-coast guns : although afterward, on a more 
careful count, there proved to be more than two hundred and fifty 
Bea-eoast or siege guns, and thirty-one thousand bales of cotton. 
At that interview Mr. Browne, who was a shrewd, clever Yankee, 
told me that a vessel was on the point of starting for Old Point 
Comfort, and, if she had good weather off Cape Ilatteras, would 
:reach Fortress Monroe by Christmafrday, and he suggested that 
I might make it the occasion of sending a welcome Christmas 
gift to the President, Mr, Lincoln, who peculiarly enjoyed such 
pleasantly. I accordingly sat down and wrote on a slip of 
paper, to be left at the telegraph-office at Fortress Monroe for 
transmission, the following : 

Savannah, GxoBoiAf December 22, 1804. 

To HU Exeelleney Prmdent Lixoolx, Washington^ D, C. : 

I beg to present you as a Chrigtmas-gift the city of Savannah, with one 
bmidred and fifty heavy guns and plenty of ammunition, also about twenty- 
ftre tlionsand bales of cotton. W. T. Suebmax, Mapr- General, 

This message actually reached him on Christmas-eve, was 
extensively published in the newspapers, and made many a house- 
hold nnosaally happy on that festive day ; and it was in the 



answer to this difipatch that Mr. linooln wrot^'ine the letter 
of December 2Sth, already giyen, begiiming with the woids^ 
^"Mxajy many thanks," etc, which he sent at the bands of Gen- 
eral John A. Logan, who happened to be in Washington, and 
was coming to Savannah, to rejoin his command. 

On the 23d of December were made the following general 
orders for the disposition of the troops in and about Savannah : 

(Special FMd Oidtt Zra 1» J 

OiADguAsnoM IduxAJcr Dimnrn or tub IfuoMiFn, ) 
nr fBB Food, Bataxsab^ QfmomnA, J> t e$ m bt r SS, 1864. f 

SsTannab, being now in our poeseasioii, the river partially deared oat, 
and metflores having been taken to remove all obstniotiona, will at onoe 
be made a icrand depot for fiitore operations: 

1. The diief-qoartermaster, General Eaeton, will, after ginng the neoea- 
aai7 orders touching the transports in Ogeecbee River and OssalMw Sound, 
come in person to Savannah, and take possession of all pahlio hnildings, 
vacant storerooms, warehouses, eto^ that may be now or hereafter needed 
lor any department of the army. No rents will be paid by the Government 
of the United States during the war, and aU bmldhigs most be distributed 
aceoiding to the acenstomed roles of the Qaartermaster's Department, as 
Ihongh th<^ were publio property. 

3. The chief commissary of sabsistence, Colonel A. Beokwith, will trans- 
(ier the grand depot of the army to the city of Savannah, secure possession 
of the needfyd buildings and offices, and give the necessary orders, to the 
end that the army mi^ be supplied abundantly and well. 

a. The chief-engineer, Captain Poe, will at once direct which of the 
ciiemy^s forts are to be retained for our use, and which dismantled and 
destroyed. The chief ordnance-officer, Captain Baylor, will in like manner 
take possession of all property pertaining to his department captured from 
the enemy^ and cause the same to be collected and conveyed to pouits of 
li^ouHty; aU the heavy coast^guns will be dismounted and carried to Fort 

4% The trvK>p«, for the present, will be grouped about the city of Savan- 
ImH, locking to convenience of camps; General Slocum taking from the 
^^xnni^ah River around to the seven-mile post on the canal, and Gen- 
eral Howard thence to the sea ; General Kilpatrick will hold King^s Bridge 
nXiXW fVrt McMHi^ter is dismantled, and the troops withdrawn from the 
l^^^lth »itle <vf the 0|Woohoe, when he will take post about Anderson*s plan- 
!i^til^V), \NA the plank-road, and picket all the roads leading from the north 

\ V^eneral Howard will keep a smal^gnard at Forts Kosedale, Beaulien, 


ITimberlejr, ThnndQrbolt, and Bonaventara, and he will cause that shore and 
fikidawaj Island to be examined yery closely, with a view to finding manj 
asdoonyenient points for the embarkation of troops and wagons on sea- 
going Teasels. 

B7 order of Mi^or-General W. T. Sherman, 

L, M. Dayton, Aide-de-Camp, 

[Spedal Held Order No. 148.] 


IS THE FixLD, Savaithah, Geoboia, December 26, 1864. ) 

The citj of Savannah and surrounding country will be held as a military 
post, and adapted to future military uses, but, as it contains a population of 
•ome twenty thousand people, who must be provided for, and as other 
dtiiens may come, it is proper to lay down certain general principles, that 
^ within its military jurisdiction may understand their relative duties 
•nd obfigations. 

1. During war, the military is superior to civil authority, and, wlioro 
''^terests dash, the civil must give way ; yet, w^here there is no conflict, 
^^Qiy encouragement should be given to well-disposed and peaceful in- 
habitants to resume their usual pursuits. Families should bo disturbed as 
'^e as poBfflble in their residences, and tradesmen allowed the free use of 
tteir shops, tools, eto. ; churches, schools, and all places of amusement and 
'^creationy should be encouraged, and streets and roads made perfectly safe 
^ persons in their pursuits. Passes should not be exacted within the line 
^ outer pickets, but if any person shall abuse these privileges by communi- 
^ting with the enemy, or doing any act of hostility to the Government of the 
^^ted States, he or she will be punished with the utmost rigor of the law. 
^^mmeroe with the outer world will be resumed to an extent commensurate 
^Hih the wants of the citizens, governed by the restrictions and rules of the 
^Jfeasnry Department. 

S. The chief quartermaster and commissary of the army may give 
*^table employment to the people, white and black, or transport them to 
*^o1i points as they may choose where employment can be had ; and may 
^^t«nd temporary relief in the way of provisions and vacant houses to the 
^^oiihy and needy, until such time as they can help themselves. They will 
*^lect first the buildings for the necessary uses of the army ; next, a suffi- 
^ent number of stores, to be turned over to the Treasury agent for trade- 
*^orea. All vacant storehouses or dwellings, and all buildings belonging to 
^l>aent rebels, will be construed and used as belonging to the United States, 
"^^^til iQoh time as their titles can be settled by the courts of the United 

8. The Mayor and City Council of Savannab will continue to exercise 
their functions, and will, in concert with the commanding oflScer of the post 


and the chief-quartermaster, see that the flre-compaidea are kept in organ- 
ization, the streets cleaned and lighted, and keep up a good nnderatanding 
between the citizens and soldiers, ThejT will ascertain and report to the 
chief commissarj of subsistence, as soon as possible, the names and nomber 
of worthy families that need assistance and support. The major will forth 
with giye pablic notice that the time has come when all moat choose theii 
course, viz., remain within onr lines, and conduct themselvea as good citi- 
zens, or depart in peace. He will ascertain the names of all who choose to 
leave Savannah, and report their names and residence to the chief-quarter- 
master, that measures maj be taken to transport them beyond our lines. 

4. Not more than two newspapers will be published in Savannah ; their 
editors and proprietors will be held to the strictest accountability, and wUl 
be punished severely, in person and property, for any libelous publication, 
mischievous matter, premature news, exaggerated statements, or any com- 
ments whatever upon the acts of the constituted authorities ; they will be 
held accountable for such articles, even though copied from other peters. 

By order of M^or-Gencral W. T. Sherman, 

L. M. Dattov, Aide-de-Camp. 

It was estimated that there were about twenty thooBand in- 
habitants in Savannah, all of whom had participated more or less 
in the war, and had no special claims to our favor, but I regarded 
the war as rapidly drawing to a close, and it was becoming a polit- 
ieal question as to what was to be done with the people of the 
South, both white and black, when the war was actually over. 
I concluded to give them the option to remain or to join their 
friends in Charleston or Augusta, and so announced in general 
orders. Tlio mayor. Dr. Arnold, was completely "fiubjugated,'* 
and, after consulting with him, I authorized him to assemble 
his City Council to take charge generally of the interests of the 
people ; but warned all who remained that they must be strict- 
ly subordinate to the military law, and to the interests of the 
General Government. About two hundred persons, mostly the 
families of men in the Confederate army, prepared to follow the 
fortunes of their husbands and fathers, and these were sent in a 
steamboat under a flag of truce, in charge of my aide Captain 
Audcnried, to Charleston harbor, and there delivered to ;m 
officer of the Confederate army. But the great bulk of the 
inhabitants chose to remain in Savannah, generally behaved 


with propriety, and good social relations at once arose between 
them and the army. Shortly after onr occupation of Savannah, 
a lady was announced at my headquarters by the orderly or 
sentinel at the front-door, who was ushered into the parlor, and 
proved to be the wife of General G. "W. Smith, whom I had 
hiown about 1850, when Smith was on duty at West Point. 
She was a native of N'ew London, Connecticut, and very hand- 
some. She began her interview by presenting me a letter from 
her husband, who then commanded a division of the Georgia 
militia in the rebel army, which had just quitted Savannah, 
which letter began, " Deab Sherman : The fortunes of war, etc., 
compel me to leave my wife in Savannah, and I beg for her your 
courteous protection," etc., etc. I inquired where she lived, and 
if anybody was troubling her. She said she was boarding with 
a lady whose husband had, in like manner with her own, gone 
off with Hardee's army; that a part of the house had been taken 
for the use of Major^General Ward, of Kentucky ; that her land- 
lady was approaching her confinement, and was nervous at the 
i^oise which the younger staff-officers made at night, etc. I ex- 
plained to her that I could give but little personal attention to 
^Uch matters, and referred her to General Slocum, whose troops 
^>ccupied the city. I afterward visited her house, and saw, per- 
^nally, that she had no i-eason to complain. Shortly afterward 
•Afc. Hardee, a merchant of Savannah, came to me and presented 
^ letter from his brother, the general, to the same effect, alleg- 
Ujg that his brother was a civilian, had never taken up arms, and 
^dced of me protection for his family, his cotton, etc. To him 
t gave the general assurance that no harm was designed to any 
Of the people of Savannah who would remain quiet and peace- 
able, but that I could give him no guarantee as to his cotton, for 
Over it I had no absolute control ; and yet still later I received 
^ note from the wife of General A. P. Stewart (who commanded 
a corps in Hood's army), asking me to come to see hqr. This I 
did, and found her to be a native of Cincinnati, Ohio, wanting 
protection, and who was naturally anxious about the fate of her 
ImBband, known to be with General Hood, in Tennessee, re- 
treating before General Thomas. I remember that I was able 


to assure her that he had not been killed or captured, up to 
that date, and think that I advised her, instead of attemptiiigto 
go in pursuit of her husband, to go to Cindnnati, to her unde, 
Judge Storer, there await the issue of events. 

Before I had reached Savannah, and during our stay there, 
the rebel officers and newspapers represented the conduct of the 
men of our army as simply infamous ; that we respected neither 
age nor sex ; that we burned every thing we came acroefi— 
bams, stables, cotton-gins, and even dwelling-houses; that we 
ravished the women and killed the men, and perpetrated all 
manner of outrages on the inhabitants. Therefore it struck me 
as strange that Generals Hardee and Smith should commit their 
families to our custody, and even bespeak our personal caie and 
attention. These officers knew well that these reports were ex- 
aggerated in the extreme, and yet tacitly assented to these fiJse 
publications, to arouse the drooping energies of the people of the 

As the division of Major-General John TV". Q«ary, of the 
Twentieth Corps, was the first to enter Savannah, ihat officer 
was appointed to command the place, or to act as a sort of 
governor. He very soon established a good police, maintained 
admirable order, and I doubt if Savannah, either before of 
since, has had a better government than during our stay. 
The guard-mountings and parades, as well as the greater re- 
views, became the daily resorts of the ladies, to hear the mu- 
sic of our excellent bands ; schools were opened, and the 
churches every Sunday were well filled with most devout and 
respectful congregations; stores were reopened, and markets 
for provisions, meat, wood, etc., were established, so that each 
family, regardless of race, color, or opinion, could procure all 
the necessaries and even luxuries of life, provided they had 
money. Of course, many families were actually destitute of 
this, and to these were issued stores from our own stock of sup- 
plies. I remember to have given to Dr. Arnold, the mayor, an 
order for the contents of a large warehouse of rice, which he 
confided to a committee of gentlemen, who went North (to Bos- 
ton), and soon returned with one or more cargoes of flour, hams, 


sugar, coffee, etc., for gratuitous distribution, which relieved 
the most pressing wants until the revival of trade and business 
enabled the i)eople to provide for themselves. 

A lady, whom I had known in former years as Miss 
Josephine Goodwin, told me that, with a barrel of flour and 
some sugar which she had received gratuitously from the com- 
missary, she had baked cakes and pies, in the sale of which she 
realized a profit of fifty-six dollars. 

Meantime Colonel Poe had reconnoitred and laid off new 
lines of parapet, which would enable a comparatively small 
garrison to hold the place, and a heavy detail of soldiers was 
put to work thereon; Generals Easton and Beckwith had or- 
ganized a complete depot of supplies; and, though vessels 
arrived almost daily with mails and provisions, we were hardly 
ready to initiate a new and hazardous campaign. I had not yet 
received from General Grant or General Halleck any modifica- 
tion of the orders of December 6, 1864, to embark my command 
for Virginia by sea ; but on the 2d of January, 1865, General 
J. G. Barnard, United States Engineers, arrived direct from 
General Grant^s headquarters, bearing the following letter, in 
the general's own handwriting, which, with my ansjvcr, is here 


CiTT Ponrr, VntounA, December 27, 186-L f 

Major- General TT. T. Shebmait, commanding Military Division of the 

Gevblll: Before writing jou definite iDstrnctions for the next cam* 
paign, I wanted to receive jonr answer to mj letter written from Wash- 
ington. Tonr coDfidence in being able to march np and join this armj 
pleases me, and I believe it can be done. The effect of snch a campaign 
win be to disorganize the Sonth, and prevent the organization of new 
anniet from their broken fragments. Uood is now retreating, with his 
armjT broken and demoralized. His loss in men has probably not been far 
firom twenty thousand, besides deserters. If time is given , the fragments 
may be eoUected together and many of the deserters reassembled. If we 
can, we should act to prevent this. Your spare army, as it were, moving 
M proposed, will do it. 

In addition to holding Savannah, it looks to me that an intrenched camp 
on^t to be held on the railroad between Savannah and Charleston. Yonr 


movement toward Branobyille will probably enable Foster to reach this 
with his own force. This will give as a position in the South from vMdi 
we can threaten the interior without marching over long, narrov came- 
wajs, easily defended, as we have heretofore been compelled to do. Could 
not such a camp be established about Pocotaligo or Ooosawhatohiet 

I have thought that, Hood being so completely wiped out for preiat 
harm, I might bring A. J. Smith here, with fourteen to fifteen thoonnd 
men. With this increase I could hold my lines, and move out with a greater 
furce than Lee has. It would compel Lee to retain all his present force in 
the defenses of Richmond or abandon them entirely. This latter contin- 
gency is probably the only danger to the easy suocess of your expedition. 
In the event you should meet Lee's army, you would be compelled to beat 
it or find the sea-coast. Of course, I shall not let Lee's army escape if I can 
help it, and will not let it go without following to the best of my abiUty. 

Without waiting further directions, then, you may make your pniNn- 
tions to start on your northern expedition without delay. Break op tb« 
railroads in South and North Garolioa, and Join the armies operating igaiut 
Richmond as soon as you can. I will leave out all suggestions aboat the 
route you should take, knowing that your information, gained dail/ in tb« 
course of events, will be better than any that can be obtained now. 

It may not be possible for you to march to the rear of Petenboig; 
but, failing in this, you could strike either of the sea-coast ports in North 
Carolina held by us. From there you could take shipping. It voold be 
decidedly preferable, however, if you could march the whole distance. 

From the best information I have, you will find no diflSculty in supply* 
ing your army until you cross the Roanoke. From there here is but a fc^ 
days' march, and supplies could be collected south of the river to bring jo^ 
through. I sliall establish communication with you there, by steambo^'^ 
aud gunboat. By this means your wants can be partially supplied. I sh^^ 
hope to hear from you soon, and to hear your plan, and about the time c^^ 

Please instruct Foster to hold on to all the property in Savannah, ai^ 
especially the cotton. Do not turn it over to citizens or Treasury agents-^ 
without orders of the War Department. 

Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

U. S. Gbant, LUutenant- General 


IN TH£ FuELD, Savaa'Nah, Geoboia, January 2, ldo5. f 

Lieutenant' General U. S. Grant, City Point, 

Genebal : I have received, by the hands of General Barnard, your not^ 
of 26th and letter of 27th December. 


I herewith indoee to jon a copj ot&prcjet which I have this morning, 
iBtrict confidence, discngsed with mj immediate commanders. 

I shall need, however, krger supplies of stores, especially gram. I will 
dose to yon, with this, letters from General Eoston, quartermaster, and 
)lonel Beckwith, conmiissary of subsistence, setting forth what will be 
quired, and tmst yon will forward them to Washington with yonr sano- 
nOj 80 that the necessary steps may be token at once to enable me to carry 
t this plan on time. 

I wrote yon very fnlly on the 24th, and have nothing to add. Every 
ing here is qniet, and if I can get the necessary supplies in our wagons, 
ill be ready to start at the time indicated in my projet (January 15th). 
it, until those supplies are in hand, I can do nothing ; after they are, I 
aU be ready to move with great rapidity. 

I have heard of the affair at Gape Fear. It has turned out as you will 
member I expected. 

I have fbmished General Easton a copy of the dispatch from the Sec- 
tary of War. He will retain possession of all cotton here, and ship it as 
It as veesels can be had to New York. 

I shall immediately send the Seventeenth Corps over to Port Royal, by 
lata, to be ftimished by Admiral Dahlgren and General Foster (without 
terfering with General Easton^s vessels), to make a lodgment on the rail- 
id at Poootaligo. 

General Barnard will remain with me a few days, and I send this by a 
iflkifficer, who can return on one of the vessels of the supply-fleet. 1 
ppoae that, now that General Butler has got through with them, you can 
are them tons. 

Ify report of recent operations is nearly ready, and will be sent you in a 
J or two, as soon as some further subordinate reports come in. 

I am, with great respect, very truly, your friend, 

W. T. Sheeman, Major- OeneraU 



1. Right wing to move men and artillery by transports to head of Broad 
iver and Beaufort ; reestablish Port Royal Ferry, and mass the wing at 
in the neighborhood of Pocotaligo. 

Left wing and cavalry to work slowly across the causeway toward Har- 
leville, to open a road by which wagons can reach their corps about 
road River ; also, by a rapid movement of the left, to secure Sister's 
Brry, and Angusta road out to Robertsville. 

In the mean time, all guns, shot, shell, cotton, etc., to be moved to a safe 
(•M, easy to guard, and provisions and wagons got ready for another 


swath, aiming to have onr armj in band about tbe bead of Broad Rker, 
say Pocotaligo, Robertsville, and Goosawbatcbie, by tbe 15tb Janoary. 

2. The whole army to move with loaded wagons by tbe roads leading 
in tbe direction of Colambia, wbicb afford tbe best cbanoe of forage and 
provisions. Howard to be at Pocotaligo by the 15tb January, and Slocom 
to be at Hobortsville, and Eilpatrick at or near Goosawbatcbie abont the 
same date. General Foster^s troops to occupy Savannah, and gunboats to 
protect the rivers as soon as Howard gets Pocotaligo. 

W. T. Shsbmak, Major- General • 

Therefore, on the 2d of January, I was authorized to march 
with my entire army north by land, and concluded at once to 
secm^e a foothold or starting-point on the South Carolina side, 
selecting Pocotaligo and Ilardeeville as the points of ^ende^ 
Yous f pr the two wings ; but I still remained in doubt as to the 
wishes of the Administration, whether I should take Charleston 
en route^ or confine my whole attention to the incidental ad- 
vantages of breaking up the railways of South and North Caro- 
lina, and the greater object of uniting my army with that of 
General Grant before Eichmond. 

General Barnard remained with me several days, and was 
regarded then, as now, one of the first engineers of the age, per- 
fectly coTnj)etcnt to advise me on the strategy and objects of 
the new campaign. lie expressed himself delighted with the 
high spirit of the army, the steps already taken, by which w^ 
had captured Savannah, and he personally inspected some of the 
forts, such as Thunderbolt and Causten's Bluff, by which the 
enemy had so long held at bay the whole of our navy, and had 
defeated the previous attempts made in April, 1862, by the army 
of General Gillinore, which had bombarded and captured Fort 
Pulaski, but had failed to reach the city of Savannah, I thii^ 
General Barnard expected me to invite him to accompany ^ 
northward in his official capacity ; but Colonel Poe, of my st^S' 
had done so well, and was so perfectly competent, that I thoug*^^ 
it unjust to supersede him by a senior in his own corps. I tb^^^ 
fore said nothing of this to General Barnard, and soon after 1*-^ 
returned to his post with General Grant, at City Point, beari^ 
letters and full personal messages of our situation and wants. 


We were very much in want of light-dranght steamers for 
lUYigating the shallow waters of the coast, so that it took the 
3e?enteenth Corps more than a week to transfer from Thnnder- 
)oIt to Beaufort, South Carolina. Admiral Dahlgren had sup- 
plied the Harvest Moon and the Pontiac, and Geueral Foster 
sare us a oonple of hired steamers ; I was really amused at 
lie effect this diort sea-voyage had on our men, most of whom 
lad never before looked upon the ocean. Of course, they were 
itsahjects for searsickness, and afterward they begged me never 
igain to send them to sea, saying they would rather march 
i Uiousand miles on the worst roads of the South than to 
pend a single night on the ocean. By the 10th General Howard 
lad collected the bulk of the Seventeenth Corps (General Blair) 
n Beaufort Island, and began his march for Pocotaligo, twenty- 
ve miles inland. They crossed the channel between the island 
ad maiurland during Saturday, the 14th of January, by a pon- 
Km-bridge, and marched out to Garden's Comers, where there 
as some light skirmishing ; the next day, Sunday, they con- 
nued on to Pocotaligo, finding the strong fort there abandoned, 
id accordingly made a lodgment on the railroad, having lost 
ily two officers and eight men. 

About the same time General Slocum crossed two divi- 
ons of the Twentieth Corps over the Savannah Kiver, above 
le city, occupied Hardeeville by one division and Purysburg 
f another. Thus, by the middle of January, we had effected 
lodgment in South Carolina, and were ready to resume the 
ardb northward; but we had not yet accumulated enough 
^ovifiionB and forage to fill the wagons, and other causes of 
day occurred, of which I will make mention in due order. 

On the last day of December, 1864, Captain Breese, United 
^ates Navy, flag-officer to Admiral Porter, reached Savannah, 
"inging the first news of General Butler's failure at Fort 
Uher, and that the general had returned to James Eiver with 
6 land-forces, leaving Admiral Porter's fleet anchored off Capo 
ear, in that tempestuous season. Captain Breese brought me 
letter from the admiral, dated December 29th, asking me to 
nd him from Savannah one of my old divisions, with which 


he said lie would make short work of Fort Fisher ; that he li^^ad 
abeadj bombarded and silenced its gnns, and that General B'^nt- 
ler had failed because he was afraid to attack, or even give t ^e 
order to attack, after (as Porter insisted) the guns of Fort Fial^er 
liad been actually silenced by the navy. 

I answered him promptly on the 31st of December, that> 1 
proposed to march north inlandj and that I would prefer ^ 
leave the rebel garrisons on the coast, instead of dislod^ng ac^x-d 
piling them up in my front as we progressed. Ftom the chance?^ 
as I then understood them, I supposed that Fort Fisher was g9^^ 
risoned by a comparatively small force, while the whole divi- 
sion of General Hoke remained about the city of Wilniingto]::9-) 
and that, if Fort Fisher were captured, it would leave Gtmer^^l 
Hoke free to join the larger force that would naturally be e(^^" 
lectcd to oppose my progress northward. I accordingly answeres*^ 
Admiral Porter to this effect, declining to loan him the use C^^ 
one of my divisions. It subsequently transpired, however, tha"^^ 
as soon as General Butler reached City Point, General Grai^^^ 
was unwilling to rest under a sense of failure, and accordingl^jiJ 
dispatched back the same troops, reenf orced and commanded b; 
General A. H, Terry, who, on the 15th day of January, sac 
ccssfully assaulted and captured Fort Fisher, with its 
gan-ison. After the war was over, about the 20th of May, 
I was giving my testimony before the Congressional Committi 
on the Conduct of the War, the chairman of the committee. Sen 
ator B. F. "Wade, of Ohio, told me that General Butler had 
summoned before that committee during the previous January. 
and had just finished his demonstration to their entire satisfac- 
tion that Fort Fisher could not be carried by assault, when thej 
heard the newsboy in the hall crying out an " extra.^* 
him in, they inquired the news, and he answered, " Fort FisheiK^ ^^ 
done took ! " Of course, they all laughed, and none m< 
heartily than General Butler himself. 

On the 11th of January there arrived at Savannah a revenue 
cutter, having on board Simeon Draper, Esq., of New Tor^^ "t 
City, the Hon. E. M. Stanton, Secretary of War, Quartermastec^K:^ 
General Meigs, Adjutant-General Townsend, and a retinue ot*^ >f 


tliaiiB, who had come down from the North to regulate the 
11 affairs of Savannah. 

I was instructed by Mr. Stanton to transfer to Mr. Draper 
cnstom-honse, post-office, and such other public buildings 
these civilians needed in the execution of their office, and 
anse to be delivered into their custody the captured cotton. 
a was accomplished by — 

[Sp«dal Ftold Orders, No. 10.] 


US TBM FiXLD, Sayaitnah, Geoboia, January 12, 1865. ) 

.. Brevet Brigadier-General Easton, chief-quartermaster, will tarn over 

imeon Draper, Esq., agent of the United States Treasary Department, 

otton now in the city of Sayannah^ prize of war, taking his receipt for 

lame in grosa, and returning for it to the qnartermaster-general. He 

also afford Mr. Draper all the facilities in his power in the way of 

qtortation, lahor, etc., to enahle him to handle the cotton with expe- 


L Gtoeral Easton will also tarn over to Mr. Draper the castom-honse, 

such other buildings in the city of Savannah as he may need in the 

ntioii of his ofSce. 

Ij order of General W. T. Sherman, 

L. M. Dayton, Aide-de-Oamp. 

Up to this time all the cotton had been carefully guarded, 
h orders to General Easton to ship it by the return-vessels 
!f ew York, for the adjudication of the nearest prize-court, 
nnpanied with invoices and all evidence of title to owner- 
). Harks, numbers, and other figures, were carefully pre- 
red on the bales, so that the court might know the history of 
1 bale. But Mr. Stanton, who surely was an able lawyer, 
Dged all this, and ordered the obliteration of all the marks ; 
hat no man, friend or foe, could trace his identical cotton. 
longht it strange at the time, and think it more so now ; for 
m assured that claims, real and fictitious, have been proved 
against this identical cotton of three times the quantity 
lally captured, and that reclamations on the Treasury have 
n aUcwed for more than the actual quantity captured, viz., 
rty-one thousand bales. 


Mr. Stanton staid in Savannah several days, and seemed 
very cnrions about matters and things in general I walked 
witii him through the city, especially the bivouacs of the ser- 
eral regiments that occupied the vacant squares, and he seemed 
particularly pleased at the ingenuity of the men in construe^ 
their temporary huts. Four of the " dog-tents," or ientes 
d^abri^ buttoned together, served for a roof, and the sides were 
made of clapboards, or rough boards brought from demolished 
houses or fences. I remember his marked admiration for the 
hut of a soldier who had made his door out of a handsome 
parlor miiTor, the glass gone and its gilt frame serving for his 

He talked to me a great deal about the negroes, the former 
slaves, and I told him of many interesting incidents, illustratiiig 
their simple character and faith in our arms and progress. He 
inquired particularly about Greneral Jeff. C. Davis, who, he said, 
was a Democrat, and hostile to the negro. I assured him that 
General Davis was an excellent soldier, and I did not believe he 
had any hostility to the negro ; that in our army we had no 
negro soldiers, and, as a rule, we preferred white soldiers, but 
that we employed a large force of them as servants, teamsters, 
and pioneers, who had rendered admirable service. He then 
showed nie a newspaper account of General Davis taking up his 
pontoon-bridge across Ebcnezer Creek, leaving sleeping negro 
men, women, and children, on the other side, to be slaughtered 
by Wheeler's cavalry. I had heard such a rumor, and advised 
Mr. Stanton, before becoming prejudiced, to allow me to send 
for General Davis, which he did, and General Davis explained 
the matter to his entire satisfaction. The truth was, that, as we 
approached the seaboard, the freedmen in droves, old andyoungt 
followed the several columns to reach a place of safety. It ^ 
happened that General Davis's route into Savannah followed 
what was known as the '• Eivcr-road," and he had to make con- 
stant use of his pontoon-train — the head of his column reaching 
some deep, impassable creek before the rear was fairly over 
another. He had occasionally to use the pontoons both day and 
night. On the occasion referred to, the bridge was taken np 


frwn Ebenezer Creek while Bomo of the camp-followers re- 
mained asleep on the farther side, and these were picked up by 
Wheeler^s cavalry. Some of them, in their fright, were drowned 
in trying to swim over, and others may have been cruelly killed 
by 'WTieeler's men, but this . was a mere supposition. At all 
events, the same thing might have resulted to General Howard, 
or to any other of tiie many most humane commanders who 
filled the army. General Jeff. C. Davis was strictly a soldier, 
and donbtless hated to have his wagons and columns encumbered 
hj these poor negroes, for whom we all felt sympathy, but a sym- 
pathy of a different sort from that of Mr. Stanton, which was 
not of pnre humanity, but of jpolitics. The negro question was 
beginning to loom np among the political eventualities of the 
day, and many foresaw that not only would the slaves secure 
their freedom, but that they would also have votes. I did not 
dream of snch a result then, but knew that slavery, as such, was 
lead forever, and did not suppose that the former slaves would 
)e saddenly, without preparation, manufactured into voters, 
»qiial to all others, politically and socially. Mr. Stanton seemed 
lefiarons of coming into contact with the negroes to confer with 
hem, and he asked me to arrange an interview for him. I ac- 
ordingly sent out and invited the most intelligent of the ne- 
Toes, mostly Baptist and Methodist preachers, to come to my 
ooms to meet the Secretary of War. Twenty resjyonded, and 
rere received in my room up-stairs in Mr. Green's house, where 
It. Stanton and Adjutant-General Townsend took down the 
oziTearBation in the form of questions and answers. Each of 
[le tweniy gave his name and partial history, and then selected 
rarrison Frazier as their spokesman : 

Flnt QueBti<m, State what yonr understanding is in regard to the acts 
r Cong^ress and President Lincoln's proclamation touching the colored 
dople in the rebel States? 

Amwer, So far as I understand President Lincoln's proclamation to the 
»bel States, it ia, that if thej will laj down their arms and submit to the 
iwm of the United States, before the 1st of January, 1868, all should be 
ell; Irat if tiiej did not, then all the slaves in the Southern States should 
» free, henceforth snd forever. That is what I understood. 


A m u d QmmUom. State what yon nnderatand bj dayerji and the free- 
dom that waa to be g^vea bj the Preridenf a prodamationf 

AnmMT. fflayery ia reoeiying b j irredatible power the work of another 
man, and not bj hia oonaent. The fireedom, aa I nnderatand it, promiaed 
bj the prodamation, ia taking na firom under the yoke of bondage and 
pladng na where we ean reap the fruit of our own labor, and take eare of 
ooradfea and aadat the Govermnent in maintaSnlng onr freedom. 

F(mrik QuettUnL, State in what manner yon wonM rather five — ^whether 
nattered among the whites, or in colonies by yooraelTesf 

Amtw^. I wonld prefer to Kye by onrsdves, for there !a a pr^n^ce 
against na in the South that will take years to get oyer ; but I do not know 
that I can answer for my brethren. 

(AQ but Mr. Ijnch, a ndssionary from the North, agreed with Fraaer« 

but he thou^t they ought to live together, along with the whites.) 
• . . . • . • •'• 

JSiffkth QiisUioB. If the rebel leaders were- to arm the alayes, what 

would be its efifeetf 

^nnMT. I think they would fight as long as they were before the 

^bayonei^*^ and Just as soon as they could get away they would desert, in 


Tmik Qumii&n. Do you understand the mode of enlistment of colored 
persons in the rebel States by State agents, under the act of Congress; if 
yeS) what is your understanding ? 

Antfter. liy understanding is, that colored persons enlisted by State 
agents are enlisted as substitutes, and give credit to the State and do not 
swell the anny, because every black man enlisted by a State agent leaves a 
white man at home ; and also that larger bounties are given, or promised, 
by the State agenta than are given by the United States. The great object 
should be to push through this rebellion the shortest way ; and there seems 
to be sometUng wanting in the enlistment by State agents, for it donH 
atrdngthen the army, but takes one away for every colored man enlisted. 

El^^nth Queitum. State what, in your opinion, is the best way to enlist 
colored men as soldiers? 

Afmttr. I think, sir, that all compulsory operations should be put a stop 
tOw The ministers would talk to them, and the young men would enlist . It 
Is my opinion that it wonld be far better for the State agents to stay at 
home and the enlistments bo made for the United States under the direction 
of General Sherman. 

ITp to this timo I was present, and, on Mr. Stanton's inti- 
mating that he wanted to ask some questions affecting me, I 
withdrew, and then hd pnt the twelfth and last question : 


Tloeffth Qusstian* State what b the feeling of the colored people toward 
General Shennan, and how far do thej regard his sentiments and actions 
as firiendlj to their ri^ts and interests, or otherwise ? 

Anawer. We looked npon General Sherman, prior to his arrival, as a 
man, in the providence of God, specially set apart to accomplish this work, 
and we nnanimonaly felt inexpressible gratitude to him, looking upon him 
as a znan who should be honored for the faithful performance of his duty. 
Some of OS called npon him immediately npon his arrival, and it is probable 
he did not meet the secretary with more courtesy than he did us. His con- 
duct and deportment toward us characterized him as a friend and gentle- 
man. We have confidence in General Sherman, and think what concerns 
us could not be in better hands. This is our opinion now, from the short 
acqoaintance and intercourse we have had. 

It certainly was a strange fact that the great "War Secretary 
should have catechized negroes concerning the character of a 
general who had commanded a hundred thousand men in battle, 
liad captured cities conducted sixty-five thousand men success- 
fullj across four hundred miles of hostile territory, and had just 
brought tens of thousands of freedmen to a place of security ; 
l)nt because I had not loaded down my army by other hundreds 
of thousands of poor negroes, I was construed by others as hos- 
tile to the black race. I had received from General Halleck, at 
Washington, a letter warning me that there were certain influ- 
ential parties near the President who were torturing him with 
fioapicions of my fidelity to him and his negro policy ; but I 
shall always believe that Mr. Lincoln, though a civilian, knew 
l)etter, and appreciated my motives and character. Though this 
letter of Gteneral Halleck has always been treated by me as con- 
fidential, I now insert it here at length : 

Headquabtebs or the Army, ) 
WAflnisroTOir, D. C, December 80, 1864. ) 

Mb^' General W. T. Susbman, Savannah. 

Mt dbab Gezhebal : I take the lihcrtj of calling your atteDtioD, in this 
private and Mendlj way, to a matter which may possibly hereafter be of 
more importance to yoa than either of as may now anticipate. 

While almost e^ery one is praising your great march throngli Georgia, 
■ad the oaptnre of Savannah, there is a certain class having now great in- 
fiuence wi^ the President, and very probably anticipating still more on a 



chango of cabinet, who arc decidedly dispoaed to make a point agthutyoo. 
I mean m regard to '^ inevitable Sambo/' They saj that yoa hare ini]a> 
fested an almost criminal dislike to the negro^ and that yoa are not wiUiog 
to carry ont the wishes of the Govenmient in regard to him, but repnhe 
him with contempt I They say yoa might have brought with yoa to Sa- 
vannah more than fifty thousand, thos atripping Geoi]pa of that nrnnber of 
laborers, and opening a road by which as many more coold have emped 
from their masters ; bat that, instead of thia, you drove them from yoor 
ranks, prevented their following yoa by catting the bridges in your retr, 
and thns caused the massacre of large nambers by Wheeler'a cavaby. 

To those who know yoa as I do, such aocoaation will past u the idk 
winds, for we presume that yoa discouraged the negroes from foDoiriiig 
you because you had not the means of supporting them, and feared they 
might seriously embarrass your march. But there are otiien, and among 
them some in high authority, who think or pretend to think othenriie, 
and they are decidedly disposed to make a point against yoa. 

I do not write this to induce you to conciliate thia claas of men by d<«ig 
any thing which you do not deem right and proper, and for the intereit of 
the Government and the country ; but simply to call your attention to oe^ 
tain tilings whicli are viewed here somewhat differcntiy than from yoor 
stand-point. I will explain as briefly as possible : 

Some hero think that, in view of the scarcity of labor in the Sooth, lad 
the probability that a part, at least, of the able-bodied slaves will be called 
into the military service of the rebels, it is of the greatest importance to 
open outlets by which these slaves can escape into our lines, and thej uj 
that the route you have passed over should be made the route of escape, 
and Savannah the great place of refuge. These, I know, are the views of 
some of the leading men in the Administration, and they' now express dii- 
satisfaction that you did not carry them out in your great raid. 

Now that you arc in possession of Savannah, and there can be no fiff- 
thcr fears about supplies, would it not be i)Ossible for yoa to reopen these 
avenues of escape for the negroes, without interfering with your mibtai? 
operations ? Could not such escaped slaves find at least a partial iopply 
of food in the rice-lields about Savannah, and cotton plantations on tlM 

I merely throw out these suggestions. I know that such a course 
would be approved by the Government, and I believe that a manifestatioo 
on your part of a desire to bring the slaves within our lines will do mnch 
to silence your opponents. You will appreciate my motives in writing this 
private letter. Yours truly, II, W. Hallsos. 

There is no doubt that Mr. Stautoii, when he reached Sa- 
vannah, shared these thoughts, but luckily the negroes them- 


ires convinced him that he was in error, and that tlicy under- 
cxxl their own interests far better than did the men in Wash- 
^toiij who tried to make political capital out of this negro 
lestion. The idea that such men should have been permitted 
hang aronnd Mr. Lincoln, to torture his life by suspicions of 
3 officers who were toiling with the single purpose to bring 
3 urar to a successful end, and thereby to liberate aU slaves, is 
air illustration of the influences that poison a political capital. 
My aim then was, to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, 
follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and 
3ad us. " Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom." I 
1 not want them to cast in our teeth what General Ilood had 
ce done in Atlanta, that we had to call on their slaves to help 
to subdue them. But, as regards kindness to the race, encour- 
ing them to patience and forbearance, procuring them food 
i clothing, and providing them with land whereon to labor, I 
iert that no army ever did more for that race than the one I 
minanded in Savannah. When wo reached Savannah, we 
5re beset by ravenous State agents from Hilton Head, who en- 
led and carried away our servants, and the corps of pioneers 
iiich we had organized, and which had done such excellent 
rvioe. On one occasion, my own aide-de-camp. Colonel 
udenried, found at least a hxmdred poor negroes shut up in a 
>U6e and pen, waiting for the night, to be conveyed stealthily 
► Hilton Head. They appealed to him for protection, alleg- 
Lg that they had been told that they must he soldiers, that 
Massa Lincoln '' wanted them, etc. I never denied the slaves 
full opportunity for volxmtary enlistment, but I did prohibit 
►rce to be used, for I knew that the State agents were more in- 
uenced by the profit they derived from the largo boimties then 
sing paid than by any love of country or of the colored race. 
1 the language of Mr. Frazier, the enlistment of every black 
lau " did not strengthen the army, but took away one white 
LUi from the ranks." 

During Mr. Stanton's stay in Savannah we discussed this 
3gro question very fully ; he asked me to draft an order on 
le subject) in accordance with my own views, that would meet 

250 8AYANNAH AND POOOTALIGO. [1864-'«6. 

&0 pressing necessities of the ease, and I did so. We went 
orer this order, No. 15, of Jannaiy 16, 1865, verj carefallj. 
The secretaiy made some verbal modifications, when it was 
approved by him in all its details, I published it, and it went 
into operation at once. It provided folly for the enlistment of 
colored troops^ and gave the freedmen certain poeseflsoiy 
rights to land, which afterward became matters of judicial in 
qniry and decision. Of course, the military authoritiefl at that 
day, when war prevailed, had a perfect right to grant the pos- 
session of any vacant land to which they could extend military 
protection, but we did not undertake to give a f ee«mple title ; 
and all that was designed by these special field orders was to 
make temporary provisions for the freedmen and their familieB 
during the rest of the war, or until Ck>ngre8S should take ac- 
tion in the premises. All Hiat I now propose to assert is, that 
Mr. Stanton, Secretary of War, saw these orders in the rou^ 
and approved every paragraph thereof, before they were made 
public : 

[BpeobX Held 0id«n, ZTo. 10.] 


vx TDB Field, SAVAinrAH, Gsobgia, Janutay 16, 1866. ) 

1. The islands from Oliarleston sontli, the abandoned rice-fields along 
the rivers for thirty miles back from the sea, and the conntry bordering the 
St. John's Hiver, Florida, are reserved and set apart for the settlement of 
the negroes now made free by the acts of war and the proclamation of the 
President of the United States. 

2. At Beaufort, Hilton Head, Savannah, Femandina, St. Augustine, and 
Jacksonville, the blacks may remain in their chosen or accustomed voca- 
tions ; but on the islands, and in the settlements hereafter to be established, 
no white person whatever, unless military officers and soldiers detailed for 
duty, will be permitted to reside ; and the sole and exclusive management 
of affairs will be left to the freed people themselves, subject only to the 
United States military authority, and the acts of Congress. By the laws of 
war, and orders of the President of the United States, the negro is free, and 
must be dealt with as such. He cannot be subjected to conscription, or 
forced military service, save by the written orders of the highest military 
authority of the department, under such regulations as the President or 
Oongress may prescribe. Domestic servants, blacksmiths, carpenters, and 
other mechanics, will be free to select their own work and residence, but 
the young and able-bodied negroes must be encouraged to enlist as soldien 


be seirice of the Fnited States, to contribute their share toward main- 
ling their own freedom, and securing their rights as citizens of the 
feed States. 

Negroes so enlisted will be organized into companies, battalions, and 
nents, imder the orders of the United States military authorities, and 
be paid, fed, and clothed, according to law. The bounties paid on en- 
lent maj, with the consent of the recruit, go to assist his family and 
ement in procuring agricultural implements, seed, tools, boots, clothing, 
other articles necessary for their livelihood. 

L UnieneTer three respectable negroes, heads of families, shall desire to 
e on land, and shall have selected for that purpose an island or a locality 
liy defined within the limits above designated, the Inspector of Settlc- 
ts and Plantations will himself, or by such subordinate officer as he 
appoint, give them a license to settle such island or district, and afford 
1 such assbtance as he can to enable them to establish a peaceable agri- 
iral settienient. The three parties named will subdivide the land, under 
iDpervision of the inspector, among themselves, and such others as may 
Me to settle near them, so that each family shall have a plot of not more 
I forty acres of tillable] ground, and, when it borders on some water- 
mel, with not more than eight hundred feet water-front, in the posses- 
of which land the military authorities will afford them protection until 
1 time as they can protect themselves, or until Congress shall regulate 
r title. The quartermaster may, on the requisition of the Inspector of 
lements and Plantations, place at the disposal of the inspector one or 
e of the captured steamers to ply between the settlements and one or 
B of the commercial points heretofore named, in order to afford the 
era the opportunity to supply their necessary wants, and to sell the 
nets of their land and labor. 

• THienever a negro has enlisted in the military service of the United 
^ he may locate his fiEimily in any one of the settlements at pleasure, 
acquire a homestead, and all other rights and privileges of a settler, as 
gji present in person. In like manner, negroes may settle their families 
engage on board the gunboats, or in fishing, or in the navigation of the 
d waters, without losing any claim to land or other advantages de- 
L from this system. But no one, unless an actual settler as above 
«d, or unless absent on Government service, will be entitled to claim 
ri^t to land or property in any settlement by virtue of these orders, 
la order to carry out this system of settlement, a general officer will 
etailed as Inspector of Settlements and Plantations, whose duty it shall 
Tisit the settlements, to regulate their police and general arrango- 
^ and who will furnish personally to each head of a family, subject to 
approval of the President of the United States, a possessory title in 
ing^ giving as near as possible the description of boundaries ; and who 

253 SAVANNAH AND rOCOTALlGO. [18e4.'65. 

shall acynst all claims or conflicts that may arise under the same, salyect to 
the like approval, treating such titles altogether as possessory. The Bune 
general officer will also be charged with the enlistment and organization of 
the negro recruits, and protecting their interests while absent from their 
settlements ; and will be governed bj the roles and regolations prescribed 
bjr the War Department for such purposes. 

6. Brigadier-General B. Saxton is hereby appointed Inspector of Settle- 
ments and Plantations, and will at once enter on the performance of his 
duties. No change is intended or desired in the settlement now on Bean- 
fort Island, nor will any rights to property heretofore acquired be affected 

By order of Major-General "W. T. Sherman, 

L. M. Dattox, Aniatant A^^jutant- General 

I saw a good deal of the secretary socially, during the time 
of his visit to Savannah. He kept his qnarters on the revenae- 
cutter with Simeon Draper, Esq., which cutter lay at a whtff 
in the river, but he came very often to my quarters at Mr. 
Green's house. Though appearing robust and strong, he com- 
plained a good deal of internal pains, which he said threat- 
ened his life, and would compel him soon to quit public office. 
He professed to have come from Washington purposely for rest 
and recreation, and he spoke unreservedly of the bickerings and 
jealousies at the national capital ; of the interminable quarrels 
of the State Governors about their quotas, and more particularly 
of the financial troubles that threatened the very existence of 
the Government itself. He said that the price of every thing 
had so risen in comparison with the depreciated money, that 
there was danger of national bankruptcy, and he appealed to 
mc, as a soldier and patriot, to hurry up matters so as to bring 
the war to a close. 

He left for Port Royal about the 15th of January, and prom- 
ised to go North without delay, so as to hurry back to me th© 
supplies I had called for, as indispensable for the prosecution ot 
the next stage of the campaign. I was quite impatient to get off 
myself, for a city-life had become dull and tame, and we wer^ 
all anxious to get into the pine-woods again, free from the 'v^' 
portunities of rebel women asking for protection, and of th® 
civilians from the North who were coming to Savannah for cO^ 
ton and all sorts of profit. 


On the 18th of Jannaiy General Slocnm was ordered to 
n over the dty of Savannah to General J. G. Foster, coni- 
nding the Department of the South, who proposed to retain 
own headquarters at Hilton Head, and to occupy Savannah 
Gkneral Grover^s division of the Nineteenth Corps, just ar- 
3d from James Elver; and on the next day, viz., January 
h, I made the first general orders for the move. 
These were substantially to group the right wing of the 
ly at Pocotaligo, already held by the Seventeenth Corps, and 
left wing and cavalry at ornearRobertsville, in South Caro- 
k. The army remained substantially the same as during the 
?ch from Atlanta, with the exception of a few changes in the 
mianders of brigades and divisions, the addition of some men 
> had joined from furlough, and the loss of others from the 
iration of their term of service. My own personal staff re- 
ined the same, with the exception that General W. F. Barry 
. rejoined us at Savannah, perfectly recovered from his attack 
erysipelas, and continued with us to the end of the war. 
neials Easton and Beckwitb remained at Savannab, in charge 
their respective depots, with orders to follow and meet us by 
with supplies when we should reach the coast at Wilmington 
Newbem, North Carolina. 

Of course, I gave out with some ostentation, especially 
ong the rebels, that we were going to Charleston or Augusta ; 
I had long before made up my mind to waste no time on 
er, further than to play off on their fears, thus to retain for 
r protection a force of the enemy which would otherwise 
3entrate in our front, and make the passage of some of the 
kt rivers that crossed our route more difficult and bloody. 
Having accomplished all that seemed necessary, on the 21st of 
uary, with my entire headquarters, officers, clerks, orderlies, 
, with wagons and horses, I embarked in a steamer for Beau- 
, South Carolina, touching at Hilton Head, to see General 
tcr. The weather was rainy and bad, but we reached Beau- 
; safely on the 23d, and found some of General Blair's troops 
re. The bulk of his corps (Seventeenth) was, however, up on 
railroad about Pocotaligo, near the head of Broad Kiver, to 


which their supplies were carried from Hilton Head by steam- 
boats. General Hatch's division (of General Foster's comnumd) 
was still at Coosa whatchie or Tullafinny, where the Charleston 
& Savannah Bailroad crosses the river of that name. All the 
country between Beaufort and Pocotaligo was low alluvial land, 
cut up by an infinite number of salt-water sloughs and fresh- 
water creeks, easily susceptible of defense by a small force; and 
why the enemy had allowed us to make a lodgment at Pocotal- 
igo so easily I did not understand, nnless it resulted from fear 
or ignorance. It seemed to me tiien that the terrible energy 
they had displayed in the earlier stages of the war was begin- 
ning to yield to the slower but more certain industry and toi- 
pline of our Korthem men. It was to me manifest that the 
soldiers and people of the South entertained an imdue fear of 
our ^Western men, and, like children, they had invented snA 
ghostlike stories of our prowess in Georgia, that they veie 
scared by their own inventions. Still, this was a power, and I 
intendcil to utilize it. Somehow, our men had got the idea that 
South Carolina was the cause of all our troubles ; her peo{le 
were the first to fire on Fort Sumter, had been in a great 
liurrv to precipitate the coxmtry into civil war ; and therefore 
on tlioni should fall the scourge of war in its worst form. Tannt- 
ing messages had also come to us, when in Georgia, to the effect 
that, when we should reach South Carolina, we would find a 
j>oople less passive, who would fight us to the bitter end, daring 
us to come over, etc. ; so that I saw and felt that we would not 
bo able longer to restrain our men as we had done in Georgia. 

rorsonally I had many friends in Charleston, to whom I 
would gladly have extended protection and mercy, but they 
wore beyond my personal reach, and I would not restrain the 
anny lost its vigor and energy should be impaired ; and I ha^ 
ovory reason to expect bold and strong resistance at the many 
bn^ul and ileep rivers that lay across our path. 

lionond Foster's Department of the South had been enlargo^ 
to ombracH) the coast of Korth Carolina, so that the few troops 
serving there, under tlie command of General Innis X. Palm^f ^ 
at NowlK^ni, became subject to my conunand. General A. ^^ 


7 held Fort Fisher, and a ramor came that he had taken the 
of Wilmington ; but this was premature. He had about 
t thousand men. General Schofield was also known to be 
mte from Nashville for North Carolina, with the entire 
nty-third Corps, so that I had every reason to be satisfied 
I would receive additional strength as we progressed north- 
1, and before I should need it. 

General W. J. EEardee commanded the Confederate forces 
harleston, with the Salkiehatchie Eiver as his line of de- 
9. It was also known that General Beauregard had come 
L the direction of Tennessee, and had assumed the general 
mand of all the troops designed to resist our progress. 
Che heavy winter rains had begun early in January, ren- 
d the roads execrable, and the Savannah Biver became so 
len that it filled its many channels, overflowing the vast 
nt of lice-fields that lay on the east bank. This flood delayed 
departure two weeks ; for it swept away our pontoon-bridge 
avannah, and came near drowning John £• Smith's division 
be Fifteenth Corps, with several heavy trains of wagons that 
^ en route Itotsl Savannah to Pocotaligo by the old causeway. 
Qeneral Slocum had already ferried two of his divisions 
MB the river, when Sister's Ferry, about forty miles above 
mnah, was selected for the passage of the rest of his wing 
of Eilpatrick's cavalry. The troops were in motion for that 
it before I quitted Savannah, and Captain S. B. Luce, United 
iesNavy, had reported to me with a gunboat (the Pontiac) and 
iqple of transports, which I requested him to use in protecting 
ar^fl Ferry during the passage of Slocum's wing, and to f acil- 
> the passage of the troops aU he could. The utmost activity 
"ailed at all points, but it was manifest we could not get ofE 
h before the 1st day of February ; so I determined to go in 
on to Pocotaligo, and there act as though we were bound for 
rleston. On the 24:th of January I started from Beaufort 
L a part of my staff, leaving the rest to follow at leisure, 
I across the island to a pontoon-bridge that spanned the 
inel between it and the main-land, and thence rode by 
den^s Comers to a plantation not far from Pocotaligo, occu- 

236 8AYANNAH AXD POOOTAUGO. [1864-'e5. 

pied by General Bkir. There we f onnd a house, with a majeetie 
aveime of live-oaks, whose limbs had been cut away by the 
troops for firewood, and desolation marked one of those splendid 
Sooth Carolina estates where the proprietors foimerly had dis- 
pensed a hospitality that distingoished the old rSgime of that 
prond State. I slept on the floor of the house, bnt the night 
was so bitter cold that I got np by the fire several times, and 
whtti it bnmed low I rekindled it with an old mantel-clock 
and the wreck of a bedstead which stood in a comer of the 
room — ^the only act of vandalism that I recall done by myself 
personally during the war. 

The next morning I rode to Pocotaligo, and thenoe recon- 
noitred our entire Jine down to Coosawhatchie. Pocotaligo Fort 
was on low, alluvial ground, and near it began the sandy pine- 
land which connected with the firm ground extending inland, 
constituting the chief reason for its capture at the very first stage 
of the campaign. Hatch's division was ordered to that point 
from Coosawhatchie, and the whole of Howard's right wing was 
brought near by, ready to start by the 1st of February. I also 
reconnoitred the point of the Salkiehatchie Biver, where the 
Charleston Railroad crossed it, found the bridge protected by 
a rebel battery on the farther side, and could see a few men 
about it ; but the stream itself was absolutely impassable, for 
the whole bottom was overflowed by its swollen waters to the 
breadth of a full mile. Nevertheless, a division (Mower's) of 
the Seventeenth Corps was kept active, seemingly with the 
intention to cross over in the direction of Charleston, and thus 
to keep up the delusion that that city was our immediate " ob- 
jective." Meantime, I had reports from General Slocum of the 
terrible difficulties he had encountered about Sister's Ferry, where 
the Savannah River was reported nearly three miles wide, and it 
seemed for a time almost impossible for him to span it at all with 
his frail pontoons. About this time (January 25th), the weather 
cleared away bright and cold, and I inferred that the river would 
soon run down, and enable Slocum to pass the river before 
February Ist. One of the divisions of the Fifteenth Corps 
(Corse's) had also been cut off by the loss of the pontoon-bridge 

leei-'es.] savannah and pocotaugo. 257 

at Savannah, so that General Slocum had with him, not only 
his own two corps, but Corse's division and Kilpatrick's cavaky, 
without which it was not prudent for me to inaugurate tlie 
campaign. We therefore rested quietly about Pocotaligo, col- 
lecting stores and making final preparations, until the 1st of 
February, when I learned that the cavalry and two divisions of 
the Twentieth Corps were fairly across the river, and then gave 
the necessary orders for the march northward. 

Before dosing this chapter, I will add a few original letters 
that bear directly on the subject, and tend to illustrate it : 


WA8HINOT02T, D. C, Jatwaty 21, 1865. ) 

Major- General W. T. Shsbman, commanding Military Diviaion of the Mis- 

Gknsral : Your letters brought by General Barnard were received at 
Gtj Point, and read with interest. Not having them with me, however, I 
cannot aaj that in this I will be able to satisfy yon on all points of recom- 
mendation. As I arrived here at 1 p. m., and mnst leave at 6 p. m., having 
in the mean time spent over three hours with the secretary and General 
Halleck, I must be briefl Before your last request to have Thomas make a 
campaign into the heart of Alabama, I had ordered Schofield to Annapolis, 
Maryland, with his corps. The advance (six thousand) will reach the sea- 
board by the 28d, the remainder following as rapidly as railroad transporta- 
tion can be procured from Cincinnati. The corps numbers over twenty- 
one thousand men. 

• . • •••••• 

Thomas is still left with a sufiScient force, surplus to go to Selma under 
an energetic leader. He has been telegraphed to, to know whether he 
oould go, and, if so, by which of several routes he would select. No reply 
is yet received. Oanby has been ordered to act offensively from the sea- 
eoaat to the interior, toward Montgomery and Selma. Thomases forces will 
move from the north at an early day, or some of his troops will be sent to 
Canby. "Without further reinforcement Canby will have a moving column 
of twenty thousand men. 

Fort Fisher, you are aware, has been captured. We have a force there 
of eight thousand effective. At Newbem about half the number. It is 
mmored, through deserters, that Wilmington also has fallen. I am inclined 
to bdieve the rumor, because on the 17th we knew the enemy were blow- 
ing np their works about Fort Caswell, and that on the 18th Terry moved 
on Wilmington. 



If Wilmington is captured, Schofield will go there. If not, he will b* 
sent to Newbem. In either event, all the anrpluB forces at the two poati 
will move to the interior, toward Goldsboro', in cooperation with jm 
movements. From either point, railroad oommnnications can be nm oott 
there being here abundance of rolling-stock salted to the gange of thoN 

There have been aboat sixteen thousand men sent from Lee's armysoDtii. 
Of these, you will have fourteen thousand against 70a, if WilmiogtoD if 
not held bj the enemy, casualties at Fort Fisher having overtaken abod 
two thousand. 

All other troops are subject to your orders as yon come in commmiicir 
tion with them. They will be so instructed. From about Richmond I will 
watch Lee closely, and if he detaches many men, or attempts to evacoa^ 
will pitch in. In the mean time, should yon be brought to a halt anywhere^ 
I can send two corps of thirty thousand effective men to your support, fron 
the troops about Richmond. 

To resume : Canby is ordered to operate to the interior firom the GuU* 
A. J. Smith may go from the north, but I think it doubtfioL A force of 
twenty-eight or thirtj thousand will cooperate with jou fhxm Newbenor 
Wilmington, or both. Tou can call for reinforcements. 

This will be handed you by Captain Hudson, of mj stafE^ who will xetm 
with any message you may have for me. If there is anj thing I can doftr 
you in the way of having supplies on shipboard, at any point on the M^ 
coast, ready for you, let me know it. 

Yours truly, 

U. S. Gbaxt, Lieutenant' General 

Headquarters Militabt Divinox of thx MissisnFFif I 
IN TiuE Field, Poootauoo, South Caboun a, Januorjf 29, 186& 1 

Lieutenant- General IT. S. Grant, City Point-j Virginia. 

Dear General : Captain Iludson has this moment arrived with 7^ 
letter of January 21st, which I have read with interest. 

The capture of Fort Fisher has a most important bearing on my ctitt* 
paign, and I rejoice in it for many reasons, because of its intrinsic iInpo^ 
tance, and because it gives mo another point of security on the seabosri 1 
hope General Terry will follow it up by the capture of Wilmington, althon^ 
I do not look for it, from Admiral Porter's dispatch to me. I rejoice thai 
Terry was not a West-Pointer, that he belonged to your army, and th»t h« 
had the same troops with which Butler feared to make the attempt 

Admiral Dahlgron, whose fleet is reinforced by some more iron-<il<^ 
wants to make an assault d la Fisher on Fort Moultrie, but I withhold idT 
consent, for the reason that the capture of all Sullivan's Island is notoflO* 
elusive as to Oharleston; the capture of James Island would be, but all p^ 


noe that impoflsible at this time. Therefore, I am moying (as hitherto 
gned) for the railroad west of Branohville, then will swing across to 
ngebarg, which win interpose mj army between Charleston and the 
rior. Contemporaneoxis with this, Foster will demonstrate np the 
ito, and afterward make a lodgment at Bull's Baj, and occnpj the com- 
i road which leads firom Mount Pleasant toward Georgetown. When I 
to Odlumbia, I think I shall move straight for Goldsboro', via Fayette- 
w By this dronit I cnt all roads, and devastate the land ; and the forces 
g the coast, commanded by Foster, will follow my movement, taking 
thing the enemy lets go, or so occupy his attention that he cannot de- 
. an his forces against me. I feel sure of getting Wilmington, and may 
Iharleston, and being at Goldsboro', with its railroads finished back to 
ahead City and Wilmington, I can easily take Raleigh, when it seems that 
must come out. If Schofield comes to Beaufort, he should be pushed 
to Einston, on the Neuse, and may be Goldsboro' (or, rather, a point 
he Wilmington road, south of Gk)ldsboro'). It is not necessary to storm 
IsboroV because it is in a distant region, of no importance in itself, and, if 
lanison is forced to draw supplies from its north, it will be eating up the 
6 stores on which Lee depends for his command. 
[ have no doubt Hood will bring his army to Augusta. Oanby and 
oai should penetrate Alabama as &r as possible, to keep employed at 
t a part of Hood*s army; or, what would accomplish the same thing, 
imaa mi^^t reoccupy the railroad from Chattanooga forward to the 
wahyVia., Rome, Kingston, and Allatoona, thereby threatening G^rgia. 
WW that the QwrrgUL troops are disaffected. At Savannah I met dele- 
BS from several counties of the southwest, who manifested a decided- 
KMtile spirit to the Confederate cause. I nursed the feeling as far as 
riUe, and instructed Grover to keep it up. 

My left wing must now be at Sister's Ferry, crossing the Savannah River 
the east bank. Slocum has orders to be at Robertsville to-morrow, pre- 
ed to move on BamwelL Howard is here, all ready to start for the Au- 
U Baihroad at Midway. 

We find the enemy on the east side of the Salkiehatchie, and cavalry 
ODT front; but all give ground on our approach, and seem to be merely 
Udng na. If we start on Tuesday, in one week we shall be near Orange- 
% having broken up the Augusta road from the Edisto westward twenty 
ttinty-five miles. I will be sure that every rail is twisted. Should we 
nunler too much opposition near Orangeburg, tiien I will for a time neg- 
b that branch, and rapidly move on Columbia, and fill up the triangle 
BMd by the Congaree and Wateree (tributaries of the Santee), breaking 
^ great centre of the Carolina roads. Up to that point I feel full con- 
^Ma^ but from there may have to manoeuvre some, and will be guided 
tte qoestions of weather and supplies. 


Ton remember wo had fine weather last Febmaryfor onr MeridUn tr-^ 
and mj memory of the weather at Charleston is, that Febmary is uoaZ^r 
a fine month. Before the March storms come we shonld be within striku^ 
distance of the coast. The months of April and May will be the beit i!)f 
operations from Goldsboro' to Raleigh and the Roanoke. Yon maj rest 
assured that I will keep my troops well in hand, and, if I get worsted, will 
aim to make the enemy pay so dearly that yon will have less to do. I koov 
that this trip is necessary ; it mast be made sooner or later ; I am on time, 
and in the right position for it. My army is large enough for the pnrpow, 
and I ask no reinforcement, bat simply wish the ntmost aotiTity to be kept 
up at all other points, so that concentration against me may not be amTsnL 

I expect that Jeff. Davis will move heaven and earth to catch me, for 
success to this column is fatal to his dream of empire. Richmond is sot 
more vital to his cause than Columbia and the heart of South Carolini. 

If Thomas will not move on Selma, order him to occupy Rome, Eisgi- 
ton, and Allatoona, and again threaten Georgia in the direction of AIImol 

I think the "poor white trash" of the South are falling outof thdr 
ranks by sickness, desertion, and every available means ; but there isaltfig* 
class of vindictive Southerners who will fight to the last. The squabUei in 
Richmond, the howls in Charleston, and the disintegration elsewhere, are 
all good omens for us ; we must not relax one iota, but, on the oontrazy, pO« 
up our efforts. I would, ere this, have been off^ but we had terrific nio^ 
which caught us in motion, and nearly drowned some of the troopi ^ 
the rice-fields of tlie Savannah, swept away our causeway (which hid be«i 
carefully corduroyed), and made the swamps hereabout mere lakes of iliDT 
mud. The weather is now good, and I have the army on terra fj^ 
Supplies, too, came for a long time by daily driblets instead of in bulk; 
this is now all remedied, and I hope to start on Tuesday. 

I will issue instructions to General Foster, based on the reenforcemeota 
of North Carolina; but if Schofield come, you had better relieve Porter, 
who cannot take the field, and needs an operation on his leg. Let Scbofieid 
take command, with his headquarters at Beaufort, North Carolina, and witb 
orders to secure Goldsboro' (with its railroad communication back to Bets* 
fort and Wilmington). If Lee lets us get that position, he is gone up. 

I will start with my Atlanta army (sixty thousand), supplied as before 
depending on the country for all food in excess of thirty days. I will h»'« 
less cattle on the hoof, but I hear of hogs, cows, and calves, in Bamwdl>i» 
the Columbia districts. Even here wo have found some forage. Of conrs^ 
the enemy will carry off and destroy some forage, but I will bum the boa** 
where the people burn their forage, and thoy will get tired of it. 

I must risk Hood, and trust to you to hold Leo or be on his heels if »* 
comes south. I observe that the enemy has some respect for my naine,fo' 
they gave up Pocotaligo without a fight when they heard that the attackisC 


'brae belonged to my army. I will trj and keep np that feeling, which is a 
>'Qil power. With respect, yonr friend, 

W. T. Shesmatt, Major- General eommanding, 

P. 8. — ^I leave my ohief-qnartermaster and commissary behind to follow 
ootftwiae. W. T. S. 

[DiBpatoh Na 6.] 

Flao-Stbaxer Philadelphia, ) 
Sayaithah Kiykb, January 4, 1865. ) 

Eon, Gideon Wsmsa, Secretary of the Navy, 

8zB : I have already apprised the Department that the army of General 
Sherman occnpied the city of Savannah on the 21st of December. 

The rebel army, hardly respectable in numbers or condition, escaped by 
soenng the river and taking the Union Causeway toward the railroad. 

I have walked about the city several times, and can affirm that its tran- 
lidnity is undisturbed. The Union soldiers who are stationed within its 
Imiti are as orderly as if they were in New York or Boston. . . . One 
sflbot of the march of General Sherman through Georgia has been to satisfy 
lie people that their credulity has been imposed upon by the lying asser- 
ions of the rebel Government, affimung the inability of the United States 
Sovemment to withstand the armies of rebeldom. They have seen the old 
kg of the United States carried by its victorious legions through their 
3tatfl^ almost unopposed, and placed in their principal city without a blow. 

(Mace the occupation of the city General Sherman has been occupied in 
BialdDg arrangements for its security after he leaves it for the march that he 
meditates. My attention has been directed to such measures of cooperation 
IS the number and quality of my force permit. 

On the 2d I arrived here from Charleston, whither, as I stated in my 
liapatch of the 29th of December, I had gone in consequence of information 
Brom the senior officer there that the rebels contemplated issuing from the 
liarbor, and his request for my presence. Having placed a force there of 
leven monitors, sufficient to meet such an emergency, and not perceiving 
iny irign of the expected raid, I returned to Savannah, to keep in commu- 
nication with General Sherman and be ready to render any assistance that 
might be desired. General Sherman has fully informed me of his plans, 
and, 80 far as my means permit, they shall not lack assistance by water. 

On the 8d the transfer of the right wing to Beaufort was begun, and the 
only Boitable vessel I had at hand (the Harvest Moon) was sent to Thunder- 
bolt to receive the first embarkation. This took place about 8 p. m., and 
was witnessed by General Sherman and General Barnard (United States 
Kngineeni) and myself. The Pontiac is ordered around to assist, and the 
wnaf transports also followed the first move by the Harvest Moon. 

I oonld not help remarking the unbroken silence, that prevailed in 


the large array of troops ; not a voice was to be heard, as the j gathered j 
masses on the blaff to look at the vessels. The notes of a solitarj bag^i 
alone came from their midst. 

General Barnard made a brief visit to one of the rebel works (CtnsteD V 
Bloff ) that dominated this water-conrse — ^the best approach of the kind to 

I am collecting data that wUl fally exhibit to the Department the pov- 
erfal character of the defenses of the city and its approaches. General 
Sherman will not retain the extended limits they embrace, bnt will contract 
the line very much. 

General Foster still holds the position near the TnUifinny. With his 
concurrence I have detached the fleet brigade, and the men beloDging to it 
have returned to their vessels. The excellent service performed by thu de- 
tachment has fully realized my wishes, and exemplified the eflSdencyofthe 
organization — ^infantry and light artillery handled as skirmishers. Tbe 
howitzers were always landed as quickly as the men, and were hwa^i 
into action before the light pieces of the land-service could be got ashore. 

I regret very much that the reduced complements of the vessds pre- 
vent me from maintainiug the force in constant organization. With three 
hundred more marines and five hundred seamen I could frequently opente 
to great advantage, at the present time, when the attention of the rebels ii 
80 engrossed by General Sherman. 

It is said that they have a force at Hardeeville, the pickets of whicb 
were rotainod on the Union Causeway until a few days since, when woe 
of our troops crossed the river and pushed them back. Concurrently with 
this, I caused the Sonoma to anchor so as to swoop the ground in the direc- 
tion of the causeway. 

The transfer of the right wing (thirty thousand men) to Beaufort will 
so imperil the rebel force at Ilardeevillo that it will be cut off or dispersed, 
if not moved in season. 

Meanwhile I will send the Dai-Cliing to St. Helena, to meet any want 
that may arise in that quarter, while the Mingo and Pontiac will be ready 
to act from Broad River. 

The general route of the army will be northward ; but the exact direc- 
tion must be decided more or loss by circumstances which it may not be 
possible to foresee. 

My cooperation will be confined to assistance in attacking Charleston, 
or in establishing communication at Georgetown, in case the army puahee 
on without attacking Charleston, and time alone will show which of theee 
will eventuate. 

The weather of the winter first, and the condition of the ground ui 
spring, would permit little advantage to be derived from the presence » 
the army at Richmond until the middle of May. So that General 8benD<B 


no reason to move in Laste, bat can choose such objects as he prefers, 
ftjid take as much time as their attainment maj demand. The Department 
sriU learn the objects in view of General Sherman more precisely from a 
letter addressed by him to General Ilalleck, which he read to me a few 
dsjs since. 

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

J. A. Dahloben, 
Eear-Admiralf commanding South-Atlantic Blockading Squadron, 


nr TBS FuLD, Poootalioo, South Cabolota, January 29, 1865. ) 

Major-Generai J. G. Fosteb, commanding Department of the South. 

GxNXBAL : I have just received dispatches from General Grant, stating 
Ihat Schofield^i corps (the Twenty-third), twenty-one thousand strong, is 
ordered east from Tennessee, and will be sent to Beaufort, North Carolina. 
Xhatiawell; I want that force to secure a point on the railroad about 
Gkddaboro', and then to build the railroad out to that point. If Goldsboro* 
be too strong to carry by a rapid movement, then a point near the Neuse, 
Mmth of Goldsboro', will answer, but the bridge and position about Kinston, 
ihonld be held and fortified strong. The movement should be masked by 
kfae troope already at Newbem. Please notify General Palmer that these 
fcroopa are coming, and to be prepared to receive them. Migor-General 
3ohofield will command in person, and is admirably adapted for the work. 
[f it 18 posmble, I want him to secure Goldsboro^ with the railroad back to 
Iforehead City and Wilmington. As soon as General Schofield reaches 
Fort Macon, have him to meet some one of your staff, to explain in full the 
letailB of the situation of affairs with me ; and you can give him the chief 
sommand of all troops at Gape Fear and in North Carolina. If he finds the 
memy has all turned south against me, he need not follow, but turn his at- 
tention against Raleigh; if he can secure Goldsboro* and Wilmington, 
it wiU be as much as I expect before I have passed the Santee. Send him 
■n detachments of men that have come to join my army. They can be so 
organized and officered as to be efficient, for they are nearly all old soldiers 
rho have been detached or on furlough. Until I pass tlie Santee, you 
can better use these detachments at BulPs Bay, Georgetown, etc. 

I win instruct General McCallum, of the Railroad Department, to take 
Us men np to Beaufort, North Carolina, and employ them on the road out. 
I do not know that he can use them on any road here. I did instruct 
him, while awaiting information from North Carolina, to have them 
Indld a good trestle-bridge across Port Royal ferry; but I now suppose 
the pontoon-bridge will do. If you move the pontoons, be sure to make a 
good road ont to Garden's Comers, and mark it with sign-boards^-obstruct- 


ing the old road, so that, should I send back any detachments, thej would 
not be misled. 

I prefer that Hatch's force should not be materially weakened imtfl 1 im 
near Columbia, when yon may be governed by the sitnation of aSain aboot 
Charleston. If yon can break the railroad between this and CbarieitOB, 
then this force conld be reduced. 

I am, with respect, etc., 

W. T. Shkbmak, Major-Oeneral eommMiing, 

IIxAi>guABTKB8 MiuTABT DiviBUifl ov TBI Mmfuum, ) 
IS TBM FiXLD, Savasvah, JoMUTy 19, 1865. [ 

Hon, Edwin M. Staitton, Secretary of War^ Woihinffton^ 2>. C. 

Sib : When yon left Savannah a few days ago, yon forgot the map vbich 
General Geary had prepared for yon, showing the route by which bis din* 
sion entered the city of Savannah, being the first troops to occupy that city. 
I now send it to you. 

I avail myself of the opportunity also to inclose you copies of sU 
my official orders touching trade and intercourse with the people of 
Georgia, as well as for the establishment of the negro settlements. 

Delegations of the people of Georgia continue to come in, and I am satis* 
fied that, by judicious handling and by a little respect shown to tber 
prejudices, we can create a schism in Jeff. Davis's dominions. AUtltfi 
I have conversed with realize the truth that slavery as an institutioa ^ 
defunct, and the only questions that remain are what disposition shall ^ 
made of the negroes themselves. I confess myself unable to offer a completft 
solution for these questions, and prefer to leave it to the slower operatio'^ 
of time. AVe have given the initiative, and can afford to await the worki^ 
of the experiment. 

As to trade-matters, I also think it is to our interest to keep the Soutbc*^ 
people somewhat dependent on the articles of commerce to which t^®^ 
have hitherto been accustomed. General Grover is now here, and wil^ 
think, be able to handle this matter judiciously, and may gradually rel^ 
and invite cotton to come in in large quantities. But at first we shc?**^ 
manifest no undue anxiety on that score ; for the rebels would at once m^^ 
use of it as a power against us. "We should assume a tone of perfect o^^ 
tempt for cotton and every thing else in comparison with the great ol|| ^^ 
of the war — the restoration of the Union^ with all its rights and power, 
the rebels burn cotton as a war measure, they simply play into our 
by taking away the only product of value they have to exchange in fore: 
ports for war-ships and munitions. By such a course, also, they alien 
the feelings of a large class of small farmers who look to their little pare ^ 
of cotton to exchange for food and clothing for their families. I hope t>— 
Government will not manifest too much anxiety to obtain cotton in lar*^ 


qoantitieB, and espeouJly that the President will not indorse the contracts 
for the purchase of large quantities of cotton. Several contracts, involving 
from riz to ten thousand bales, indorsed bj Mr. Lincoln, have been shown 
me, bnt were not in snch a form as to amount to an order to compel nie to 
fioilitate their execution. 

As to Treasury agents, and agents to take charge of confiscated and 
abandoned property, whose salaries depend on their fees, I can only say 
that, as a general rule, they are mischievous and disturbing elements to a 
ndlitary government, and it is almost impossible for us to study the law and 
regulations so as to understand fully their powers and duties. I rather 
think the Quartermaster's Department of the army could better fulfill all 
their duties and accomplish all that is aimed at by the law. Yet on this 
■object I will leave Generals Foster and Grover to do the best they can. 

I am, with great respect, your obedient servant, 

W. T. SnEBMAN, Major' General command ing. 

Hkadquarixhs Milttart DiviBioir of the Mississippi, ) 
IH TUB Field, Savannah, Geosoia,, Janiuiry 2, lbG5. \ 

■fibn. Edwih M. Stantos, Secretary of War^ Washington^ D, C, 

Snt: I have just received from Lieutenant-General Grant a copy of that 
I^i^rt of your telegram to him of December 26th relating to cotton, a copy 
^ irhioh has been immediately ftimishcd to General Easton, chief-quarter- 
****8ter, who will be strictiy governed by it. 

I had already been approached by all the consuls and half the people 

^f Savannah on this cotton question, and my invariable answer was that 

^U the cotton in Savannah was prize of war, belonged to the United States, 

^H^ nobody should recover a bale of it with my consent ; that, as cotton 

^a^ been one of the chief causes of this war, it should help to pay its 

^^penses ; that all cotton became tainted with treason from the hour the 

^j^'^t act of hostility was committed against the United States some time in 

-^eoember, 1860 ; and that no bill of sale subsequent to that date could con- 

^«^ title. 

My orders were that an officer of the Quartermaster's Department, 
^^^ited States Army, might furnish the holder, agent, or attorney, a mere 
^^^^^cate of the fact of seizure, with description of the bales' marks, etc., 
^**^ cotton then to be turned over to the agent of the Treasury Department, 
le ihipped to New York for sale. But, since the receipt of your dispatch, 
^xve ordered General Fasten to make the shipment himself to the quarter- 
^4ter at New York, where you can dispose of it at pleasure. I do not 
the Treasury Department ought to bother itself with the prizes or 
C^tnres of war. 

Mr. Barclay, former consul at New York, representing Mr. Molynoux, 
consul here, but absent a long time, called on me with reference 


to cotton claimed by Knglifih sabjects. He seemed amazed when 
him I should pay no respect to consular certificatea, that in no event 
I treat an English snbject with more favor than one of oar own c 
citizens, and that for my part I was nnwiUing to fight for cot 
the benefit of Englishmen openly engaged in smnggling arms and 
ments of war to kill ns; that, on the contrary, it wonld afford m 
satisfaction to conduct my army to Nassau, and wipe out that i 
pirates. I explained to him, however, that I was not a diplcnnatic aj 
the General Government of the United States, but that my opin 
frankly expressed, was that of a soldier, which it would be well for 
heed. It appeared, also, that he owned a plantation on the line of 
ment of Savannah, which, of course, was pillaged, and for which 
pected me to give some certificate entitling him to indemnification, 
I declined emphatically. 

I have adopted in Savannah rules concerning property — severe b 
— founded upon the laws of nations and the practice of ciTilized { 
ments, and am clearly of opinion that we should claim all the bell 
rights over conquered countries, that the people may realize the tru 
war is no child's play. 

I embrace in this a copy of a letter, dated December 81, 1864, in t 
to one from Solomon Cohen (a rich lawyer) to General Blair, his p^ 
friend, as follows : 

Major- General F. P. Blair, commanding Seventeenth Army Corps. 

Gexeral : Yonr note, inclosing Mr. Cohen's of this date, is receive 
I answer frankly through you his inquiries. 

1. No one can practise law as an attorney in the United States "w 
acknowledging the supremacy of our Govemmenti If I am not in 
an attorney is as much an oflScer of the court as the clerk, and it wo 
a novel thing in a government to have a court to administer law which 
the supremacy of the government itself. 

2. No one will be allowed the privileges of a merchant, or, rather, t 
is a privilege which no one should seek of the Government without 
manner acknowledging its supremacy. 

3. If Mr. Cohen remains in Savannah as a denizen, his propert 
and personal, will not be disturbed unless its temporary use be ne< 
for the military authorities of the city. The title to property will : 
disturbed in any event, until adjudicated by the courts of the United 

4. If Mr. Cohen leaves Savannah under my Special Order No. 143 
public acknowledgment that he "adheres to the enemies of the 
States," and all his property becomes forfeited to the United States, 
ns a matter of favor, he will be allowed to carry with him clothii 
furniture for the use of himself, his family, and servants, and will be 
ported within the enemy's lines, but not by way of Port Royal. 

These rules will apply to all parties, and from them no exception ' 

I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant, 

W. T. Shermax, Major-Gcui 


Thii letter was in answer to specific inqnirics; it is clear, and covers all 
tbo pointSi and) should I leave before my orders are executed, I will en- 
doA'vor to impress npon my successor, General Foster, their wisdom and 

Ibope the course I have taken in these matters will meet your approba- 
tioxif lad that the President will not refond to parties claiming cotton or 
otber property, without the strongest evidence of loyalty and friendship on 
the part of the claimant, or unless some other positive end is to be gained. 

J- im, with great respect, your obedient servant, 

W. T. Shsbmak, M(^or- General commanding. 



On the 1st day of February, as before erplained, the army 
designed for the active campaign from Sayannah northward was 
composed of two wings, commanded respectiyely by Major- 
Generals Howard and Slocnm, and was sabstantially the same 
that had marched from Atlanta to Savannah. The same genenl 
orders were in force, and this campaign may properly be daased 
as a continuance of the former. 

The right wing, less Corse's division, Fifteenth CorpSy was 
grouped at or near Focotaligo, South Carolina, with its wagons 
filled with food, ammunition, and forage, all ready to Btart| and 
only waiting for the left wing, which was detained by the flood 
in the Savannah Eiver. It was composed as follows : 

Fifteenth Corps, Major- General John A, Logan. 

First Division, Brigadier-General Charles R. Woods; Second DiYisian, 
Migor-Gcneral W. B. Ilazen; Third Division, Brigadier-General JohnE 
Smith; Fourth Division, Brigadier-General John M. Corse. ArtiHei]^ 
brigade, eighteen guns, Lieutenant-Colonel W. U. Ross, First Miohigan 

Seventeenth Corps, Major- General Fbaitk P. Bulib, Jb. 

First Division, Mcyor-General Joseph A. Mower ; Second Division, B" 
adier-General M. F. Force ; Fourth Division, Brigadier-General Giles 
Smith. Artillery brigade, fourteen guns, M^or A. 0. Waterhonse, 
Illinois Artillery. 

The left wing, with Corse's di\dsion and Kilpatrick's 
was at and near Sister's Ferry, forty miles above the city ^^ 




ih, engaged in crossing the river, then much swollen. It 
iposed as follows : 

Fourteenth Corp$^ Major- General Zvxv, C. Datib. 

First Division, Brigadier-General W. P. Garlin ; Second Division, Brig- 
r-(}eneral John D. Morgan; Third Division, Brigadier-General A. 
HalrcL ArtiUerj brigade, sixteen guns, M<gor Charles Houghtaling, First 
Ullnois Artillery. 

Twentieth Corpe^ Brigadier- General A. S. Williams. 

First Division, Brigadier-General K. I. Jackson; Second Division, 
Brigadier-General J. W. Geary ; Third Division, Brigadier-General W. T. 
^"ard. Artillery brigade, sixteen guns, Migor J. A. Reynolds, First New 

Catalry Divieion^ Brigadier- General Judson Kilpatbick. 

First Brigade, Colonel T. J. Jordan, Ninth Pennsylvania Cavalry; 
Brigade, Colonel S. D. Atkins, Ninety-second Illinois Volunteers ; 
^l^M Brigade, Colonel George £. Spencer, First Alabama Cavalry. One 
^^Viittory of fonr gnns. 

The actual strength of the army, as given in the following 
ofiScial tabular statements, was at the time sixty thousand and 
fi^'venty-nine men, and sixty-eight guns. The trains were made 
^X> of about twenty-five hundred wagons, with six mules to each 
^agon, and about six hundred ambulances, with two horses each. 
16 contents of the wagons embraced an ample supply of am- 
f or a great battle ; forage for about seven days, and 
I>rtmgion8 for twenty days, mostly of bread, sugar, coffee, and 
®^3t, dep^iding largely for fresh meat on beeves driven on the 
*^Oof and such cattle, hogs, and poultry, as we expected to gather 
^<mg our line of march. 

bkoapitulation— campaign of the oabolinas. 





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The enemy occnpied the cities of Charleston and Angnsta, 
i garrisons capable of making a respectable if not successful 
use, but utterly unable to meet our veteran columns in the 
1 field. To resist or delay our progress north, General 
eeler had his division of cavalry (reduced to the size of a 
;ade by his hard and persistent fighting ever since the begin- 
; of tiie Atlanta campaign), and General Wade Hampton 

been dispatched from the Army of Virginia to his native 
B of South Carolina, with a great flourish of trumpets, and 
"aordinary powers to raise men, money, and horses, with 
ch "to stay the progress of the invader," and "to punish 
or our insolent attempt to invade the glorious State of South 
olina I " He was supposed at the time to have, at and near 
lunbia, two small divisions of cavalry commanded by himself 

Gtenend Butler. 

Of course, I had a species of contempt for these scattered 

inconsiderable forces, knew that they could hardly delay 
n hour ; and the only serious question that occurred to me 
, would General Lee sit down in Eichmond (besieged by 
leoral Grant), and permit us, almost unopposed, to pass 
nigh the States of South and North Corolina, cutting off and 
mming the very supplies on which he depended to feed his 
y in Yirginia, or would he make an effort to escape from 
leral Grant, and endeavor to catch us inland somewhere 
ireen Columbia and Ealeigh ? I knew full well at the time 
^ the broken fragments of Hood's army (which had escaped 
n Tennessee) were being hurried rapidly across Georgia, by 
gusta, to make junction in my front ; estimating them at the 
dmum twenty-five thousand men, and Hardee's, Wheeler's, 
I Hampton's forces at fifteen thousand, made forty thon- 
d; which, if handled with spirit and energy, would constitute 
snnidable force, and might make the passage of such rivers 
ihe Santee and Cape Fear a difficult undertaking. There- 
^ I took all possible precautions, and arranged with Admiral 
Ugren and General Foster to watch our progress inland by 
the means possible, and to provide for us points of security 
Dg the coast ; as, at Bull's Bay, Georgetown, and the mouth 


of Cape Fear Eiver. Still, it was extremely desirable in on : 
mareli to reach Goldsboro' in the State of North Caroling 
(distant four hundred and twenty-five miles), a point of gre^ 
convenience for ulterior operations, by reason of the two ra^ 
roads which meet there, coming from the sea-coast at Wilmingt^^j 
and Newbem. Before leaving Savannah I had sent to Newben? 
Colonel W. "W. Wright, of the Engineers, with orders to look to 
these railroads, to collect rolling-stock, and to have the roads 
repaired out as far as possible in six weeks — ^the time estimated 
as necessary for us to march that distance. 

The question of supplies remained still the one of vital impor- 
tance, and I reasoned that we might safely rely on the country for 
a considerable quantity of forage and provisions, and that, if the 
worst came to the worst, we could live several months on the 
mules and horses of our trains. Nevertheless, time was equally 
material, and the moment I heard that General Slocum had fin- 
ished his pontoon-bridge at Sister's Ferry, and that Kilpatridrs 
cavalry was over the river, I gave the general orders to manJi, 
and instructed all the columns to aim for the South Carolioi 
Eailroad to the west of Branchville, about Blackville and 

The right wing moved up the Salkiehatchie, the Seventeenth 
Cori>8 on the right, with orders on reaching Kivers's Bridge to 
cross over, and the Fifteenth Corps by Hickory Hill to Bean- 
fort's Bridge. Xilpatrick was instructed to march by way of 
Barnwell ; Corse's division and the Twentieth Corps to take 
such roads as would bring them into communication with tb^ 
Fifteenth Corps about Beaufort's Bridge. AU these columr^ 
started promptly on the 1st of February. Wo encounter^ 
AVhoclcr's cavalry, which had obstructed the road by felling trec^ 
but our men picked these up and threw them aside, so that tL^ 
obstruction hardly delayed us an hour. In person I accompani^^ 
the Fifteenth Corps (General Logan) by McPhersonville an-- 
Hickory Hill, and kept couriers going to and fro to Gener^ 
Slocum with instructions to hurry as much as possible, so as t^ 
make a junction of the whole army on the South Carolina Rai^ 
road about Blackville. 


I spent the night of February Ist at Hickory Hill Post- 
Offioe, and that of the 2d at Duck Branch Fost-Office, thirty- 
one miles ont from Pocotaligo. On the 3d the Seventeenth 
Corps was opposite Rivers's Bridge, and the Fifteenth approached 
Beaufort's Bridge. The Salkiehatchie was still over its banks, 
and presented a most formidable obstacle. The enemy ap- 
peared in some force on the opposite bank, had cut away 
an the bridges which spanned the many deep channels of the 
swollen river, and the only available passage seemed to be along 
the narrow causeways which constituted the common roads. At 
Sivers's Bridge Generals Mower and Giles A. Smith led their 
heads of column through this swamp, the water up to their 
Bhoolders, crossed over to the pine-land, turned upon tlie rebel 
brigade which defended the passage, and routed it in utter dis- 
wte. Ifc was in this attack that General Wager Swayne lost 
hifl leg, and he had to be conveyed back to Pocotaligo. Still, 
tteloss of life was very small, in proportion to the advantages 
guned, for the enemy at once abandoned the whole lino of the 
Salkiehatchie, and the Fifteenth Corps passed over at I^caufort's 
•Bridge, without opposition. 

On the 6th of February I was at Beaufort's Bridge, by 

^fbick time General A. S. Williams had got up with five 

^gadea of the Twentieth Corps; I also heard of General 

Kflpatrick's being abreast of us", at Barnwell, and then gave 

^ers for the march straight for the railroad at Midway. I 

•till remained with the Fifteenth Corps, which, on the Cth of 

* ahruary, was five miles from Bamberg. As a matter of course, 

■* Expected severe resistance at this railroad, for its loss would 

•^v-er all the communications of the enemy in Charleston with 

^hoee in Augusta. 

Early on the 7th, in the midst of a rain-storm, we reached 
'*^B railroad, almost unopposed, striking it at several points. 
^*®Xieral Howard told me a good story concerning this, which 
'^l bear repeating: He was with the Seventeenth Coii)s, 
J^^whing straight for Midway, and when about five miles 
*^*tant he began to deploy the leading division, so as to bo 
^'^^dy for battle. Sitting on his horse by the road-side, while 


the deplojmeDt was making, he saw a man coming down the 
road, riding as hard as he conld, and as he approached he reoog* 
nized him as one of his own "foragers," monnted on a vhite 
horse, with a rope bridle and a blanket for saddle. As he came 
near he called out, " Hurry up, general ; we have got the nil- 
road ! " So, while we, the generals, were proceeding deliberato- 
lyto prepare for a serious battle, a parcel of our foragers, in 
search of plunder, had got ahead and actually captured the 
South Carolina Eailroad, a line of vital importance to the rebel 

As soon as we struck the railroad, details of men were set to 
work to tear up the rails, to bum the ties and twist the baa 
This was a most important railroad, and I proposed to destroy 
it completely for fifty miles, partly to prevent a possibility of its 
restoration and partly to utilize the time neceasaiy for General 
Slocum to get up. 

The country thereabouts was very poor, but the inhahitanti 
mostly remained at home. Indeed, tiiey knew not where to ga 
The enemy's cavalry had retreated before us, but his infantry 
was reported in some strength at Branchvijle, on the farther 
side of the Edisto; yet on the appearance of a mere squad of 
our men they burned their own bridges — the very thing I 
wanted, for we had no use for them, and they had. 

We all remained stnmg along this railroad till the 9th of 
February — the Seventeenth Corps on the right, then the Fif- 
teenth, Twentieth, and cavalry, at Blackville. General Slocnni 
reached Blackville that day, with Geary's division of the Twen- 
tieth Corps, and reported the Fourteenth Corps (General Jeff- 
C. Davis's) to be following by way of Barnwell. On the 10th I 
rode up to Blackville, where I conferred with Generals Slociu^ 
and Kilpatrick, became satisfied that the whole army would be 
ready within a day, and accordingly made orders for the neX^ 
movement north to Columbia, the right wing to strike Orang®' 
burg en route, Kilpatrick was ordered to demonstrate strongly 
toward Aiken, to keep up the delusion that we might turn ^*- 
Augusta ; but he was notified that Columbia was the next o^ 
jective, and that he should cover the left fiank against AVTieel^ 


to hong around it. I wanted to reach Columbia before any 
i of Hood's army could possibly get there. Some of them 
re reported as having reached Angusta, nnder the command 
Qeneral Dick Taylor. 

Having sofficiently damaged the railroad, and effected the 
iction of the entire army, the general march was resumed on 
t 11th, each corps crossing the South Edisto by separate 
dges, with orders to pause on the road leading from Orange- 
"g to Augusta, till it was certain that the Seventeenth Corps 
I got possession of Orangeburg. This place was simply im- 
tant as its occupation would sever the communications be- 
)en Charleston and Columbia. All the heads of column 
ehed this road, known as the Edgefield road, during the 
h, and the Seventeenth Corps turned to the right, against 
UDgeburg. When I reached the head of column opposite 
mgebuig, I found' Giles A. Smith's division halted, with a 
tery unlimbered, exchanging shots with a party on the opposite 
) of the Edisto. He reported that the bridge was gone, and 
t the liver was deep and impassable. I then directed Gen- 
1 Blair to send Mower's division below the town, some four 
Bve miles, to effect a crossing there. He laid his pontoon- 
Ige^ but the bottom on the other side was overflowed, and the 
I had to wade through it, in places as deep as their waists. I 
with this division at the time, on foot, trying to pick my 
' across the overflowed bottom ; but, as soon as the head of 
imn reached the sand-hills, I knew that the enemy would not 
f remain in Orangeburg, and accordingly returned to my 
le, on the west bank, and rode rapidly up to where I had left 
38 A. Smith. I found him in possession of the broken 
Ige, abreast of the town, which he was repairing, and I was 
»iig the first to cross over and enter the town. By and be- 
> tiie time either Mower's or Giles A. Smith's skirmishers 
3ed the place, several stores were on fire, and I am sure 
i some of the towns-people told me that a Jew merchant 
i set fire to his own cotton and store, and from this the fire 
I spread. This, however, was soon put out, and the Seven- 
Dtih OorpB (General Blair) occupied the place during that 


night. I remember to have visited a large hospital, on the h^ 
near the railroad depot, which was occupied by the orphan childly 
who had been removed from the asylum in Charleston, 
gave them protection, and, I think, some provisions. The 
road and depot were destroyed by order, and no doubt a good d^ 
of cotton was burned, for we all regarded cotton as hostiJe 
property, a thing to be destroyed. General Blair was ordered to 
break up this railroad, forward to the point where it crofised the 
Santee, and then to turn for Columbia. On the morning of the 
13th I again joined the Fifteenth Corps, which crosBcd the 
North Edisto by Snilling^s Bridge, and moved straight for Co- 
lumbia, around the head of Caw-Caw Swamp. Orders were 
sent to all the columns to turn for Columbia, where it was sup- 
posed the enemy had concentrated all the men they could from 
Charleston, Augusta, and even from Virginia. That nigit I 
was with the Fifteenth Corps, twenty-one miles from Columbia, 
where my aide. Colonel Audenried, picked up a rebel officer on 
the road, who, supposing him to be of the same service vith 
himself, answered all his questions frankly, and revealed the 
truth that there was nothing in Columbia except HinnptiHi's 
cavalry. The fact was, that Genei-al Hardee, in Charleston, 
took it for granted that we were after Charleston ; the rebel 
troops in Augusta supposed they were " our objective ; " so they 
abandoned poor Columbia to the care of Hampton's cavabfT, 
which was confused by the rumors tLit poured in on it, so that 
both Beauregard and AVade Ilampton, who were in ColmnbW} 
seem to have lost their heads. 

On the 14th the head of the Fifteenth Corps, Charles R 
Woods's division, approached the Little Congaree, a broad, deep 
stream, tributary to the Main Congaree, six or eight miles b^ 
low Columbia. On the opposite side of this stream was a ne^ly* 
constructed fort, and on our side a wide extent of old cotton* 
fields, which had been overflowed, and was covered with ^ 
deep slime. General AVoods had deployed his leading briga<l^ 
which was skirmishing forward, but he reported that the bridge 
was gone, and that a considerable force of the enemy was on 
the other side. I directed General Howard or Losan to ^'^^ 


brigade by a circuit to the left, to see if this stream could not 
) crossed higher up, but at the same time knew that General 
ocnm's route would bring him to Columbia behind this stream, 
d that his approach would uncover it. Therefore, there was 

> need of exposing much life. The brigade, however, found 
sans to cross the Little Congaree, and thus uncovered the pas- 
ge by the main road, so that General Woods's skirmishers. at 
.08 passed over, and a party was set to work to repair the bridge, 
aich occupied less than an hour, when I passed over with 
Y whole staff. I found the new fort unfinished and unoccu- 
9d, bnt from its parapet could see over some old fields bounded 

the north and west by hills skirted with timber. There was 
plantation to our left, about half a mile, and on the edge of the 
nber was drawn up a force of rebel cavalry of about a regi- 
mt, which advanced, and charged upon some of our foragers, 
lo were plundering the plantation ; my aide. Colonel Auden- 
d, who had ridden forward, came back somewhat hurt and 
oised, for, observing this charge of cavalry, he had turned for 

> and his horse fell with him in attempting to leap a ditch. 
merel Woods's skirmish-line met this charge of cavalry, and 
yve it back into the woods and beyond. We remained on 
it ground during the m'ght of the 15th, and I camped on the 
surest dry ground behind the Little Congaree, where on the 
xt morning were made the wi-itten orders for the government 
the troops while occupying Columbia. These are dated Feb- 
uy 16, 1865, in these words : 

General Howard will cross the Saluda and Broad Rivers as near their 
Qths as possible, occupy Columbia, destroy the public buildings, railroad 
»per^y. mannfacturing and machine shops ; but will spare libraries, asy- 
u^ and private dwellings. He will then move to Winnsboro', destroying 
route utterly that section of the railroad. He will also cause all bridges, 
stleSy water-tanks, and depots on the railroad back to the Wateree to be 
■ned, switches broken, and such other destruction as he can find time to 
omplifih consistent with proper celerity. 

These instructions were embraced in General Order No. 26, 
dch prescribed the routes of march for the several colnmns as 


far as Fayettovillc, North Carolina, and is conclusive that I th^ 
regarded Columbia as simply one point on our general route 
march, and not as an important conquest. 

During the 16th of February the Fifteenth Corps reached 
the point opposite Columbia, and pushed on for the Saluda Fae- 
tory three miles above, crossed that stream, and the head of 
column reached Broad Kiver just in time to find its bridge ia 
flames, Butler's cavalry having just passed over into Colmnbia. 
The head of Slocum's column also reached the point opposite 
Columbia the same morning, but tlie bulk of his aimjfwas 
back at Lexington. I reached this place early in the morniog 
of the 16th, met General Slocum there, and explained to him 
the purport of General Order No, 26, which contemplated the 
passage of his army across Broad Kiver at Alston, fifteen mileB 
above Columbia. Hiding down to the river-bank, I saw the 
wreck of the large bridge which had been burned by the eneny, 
with its many stone piers still standing, but the superstructure 
gone. Across the Congaree Kiver lay the city of Colninbia, 
in plain, easy view. I could see the unfinished State-House, 
a handsome granite structure, and the ruins of the railroad 
depot, which were still smouldering. Occasionally a few dti- 
zens or cavaliy could be seen running across the streets, and 
quite a number of negroes were seemingly busy in canyingoff 
bags of grain or meal, which were piled up near the burned 

Captain De Ores had a section of his fwenty-pound Pairott 
guns unlimberedj firing into the town. I asked him what he 
was firing for ; he said he could see some rebel cavalry occasion- 
ally at the intersections of the streets, and he had an idea that 
there was a large force of infantry concealed on the oppoeit^ 
bank, lying low, in case we should attempt to cross over directly 
into the to\vn. I instructed him not to fire any more into the 
town, but consented to his bursting a few shells near the depot, 
to scare away the negroes who were appropriating the bags of 
com and meal which we wanted, also to fii'c three shots at the 
unoccupied State-House. I stood by and saw these fired, and 
then all firing ceased. Although this matter of firing into Co 


has been the subject of mucli abuse and inyestigation, I 
3t to hear of any single person having been killed in 
t)ia by our cannon. On the other hand, the night before, 
Woods's division was in camp in the open fields at Little 
«e, it was shelled all night by a rebel battery from the 
ide of the river. This provoked me much at the time, 
ras wanton mischief, as Generals Beauregard and Hamp- s 
ist have been convinced that they could not prevent ^ 
trance into Columbia. I have always contended that I 
have been justified in retaliating for this unnecessary 
war, but did not, though I always characterized it as it 

) night of the 16th I camped near an old prison bivouac 
6 Columbia, known to our prisoners of war as " Camp 
m," where remained the mud-hovels and holes in the 

which our prisoners had made to shelter themselves 
le winter's cold and the smnmer's heat. The Fifteenth 
WBB then ahead, reaching to Broad Kiver, about four miles 
Columbia; the Seventeenth Corps was behind, on the 
mk opposite Columbia ; and the left wing and cavalrj^ 
ned north toward Alston. 

) next morning, viz., February 17th, I rode to the head of 
1 Howard's colunm, and found that during the night he 
Tied Stone's brigade of Woods's division of the Fifteenth 
across by rafts made of the pontoons, and that brigade 
en deployed on the opposite bank to cover the construo- 

a pontoon-bridge nearly finished. 

it with General Howard on a log, watching the men lay 
idge ; and about 9 or 10 a. m. a messenger came from 
1 Stone on the other side, saying that the Mayor of Colum- 
i come out of the city to surrender the place, and asking 
ers. I simply remarked to General Howard that he had 
ers, to let Colonel Stone go on into the city, and that 
lid follow as soon as the bridge was ready. By this same 
ger I received a note in pencil from the Lady Superioress 
mvent or school in Columbia, in which she claimed to 
jen a teacher in a convent in Brown County, Ohio, at the 


time my dangliter Minnie was a pupil there, and therefore ask- 
ing special protection. My recollection is, that I gave the note 
to my brother-in-law, Colonel Ewing, then inspector-general on 
my staff, with instructions to see this lady, and assure her that 
we contemplated no destruction of any private property in Co- 
lumbia at all. 

As soon as the bridge was done, I led my horse over it, fol- 
lowed by my whole staff. Greneral Howard accompanied me 
with his, and General Logan was next in order, followed by 
General C. E. "Woods, and the whole of the Fifteenth Corpa. 
Ascending the hill, we soon emei^ed into a broad road leading 
into Columbia, between old fields of com and cotton, and, enter- 
ing the city, we found seemingly all its population, white and 
black, in the streets. A high and boisterous wind was prevail- 
ing from the north, and flakes of cotton 'were flying abont in 
the air and lodging in the limbs of the trees, reminding na of 
a Northern snow-storm. Near the market-square we fonnd 
Stone's brigade halted, with arms stacked, and a large detail of 
his men, along with some citizens, engaged with an old fire-engine, 
trying to put out the fire in a long pile of burning cotton-bales, 
which I was told had been fired by the rebel cavalry on with- 
drawing from the city that morning. I know that, to avoid 
this row of burning cotton-bales, I had to ride my horse ot^ 
the sidewalk. In the market-square had collected an immense 
crowd of whites and blacks, among whom was the mayor ot ^^ 
city. Dr. Goodwin, quite a respectable old gentleman, who ^^ 
extremely anxious to protect the interests of the citizens, 
was on foot, and I on horseback, and it is probable I told 
,. then not to be uneasy, that we did not intend to stay long, 
had no purpose to injure the private citizens or private prop^^^ 
About this time I noticed several men trying to get thro 
the crowd to speak with me, and called to some black pec:^ 
to make room for thcni ; when they reached me, they explai^^ 
that they were ofiicers of our army, who had been prisoners, 
escaped from the rebel prison and guard, and were of coi 
overjoyed to find themselves safe with us. I told them that,.^ 
soon as things settled down, they sliould report to General IIcC^ 


and, who would provide for their gafety, and enable them to 
travel with us. One of them handed me a paper, asking me to 
T^esLd it at my leisure ; I put it in my breast-pocket and rode on. 
Oeneral Howard was still with me, and, riding down the street 
'^hich led by the right to the Charleston depot, we found it and 
a large storehouse burned to the groimd, but there were, on the 
platform and ground near by, piles of cotton bags filled with 
Com and corn-meal, partially burned. 

A detachment of Stone's brigade was guarding this, and 
separating the good from the bad. We rode along the rail- 
ix>ad-traek, some three or four hundred yards, to a large foundery, 
'When some man rode up and said the rebel cavalry were close 
"by, and he warned us that we might get shot. We accordingly 
turned back to the market-square, and en route noticed that 
Beveral of the men were evidently in liquor, when I called Gen- 
eral Howard's attention to it. He left me and rode toward 
General Woods's head of column, which was defiling through 
tie town. On reacliing the market-square, I again met Dr. 
Goodwin, and inquired where he proposed to quarter me, 
Qjid he said that he had selected the house of Blanton Duncan, 
^Elsq., a citizen of LouisviUe, Kentucky, then a resident there, 
"^vho had the contract for manufacturing the Confederate money, 
&nd had fled with Hampton's cavalry. We all rode some six or 
«^ight aqnares back from the new State-House, and found a very 
modem house, completely furnished, with stabling and a 
yard, took it as our headquarters, and occupied it during 
stay. I considered General Howard as in command of the 
X^lft^ *^d referred the many applicants for guards and protec- 
"tSon to him. Before our headquartcr-wagons had got up, I 
^trolled through the streets of Columbia, found sentinels posted 
t the principal intersections, and generally good order prevail- 
;, but did not again return to the main street, because it was 
^6lled with a crowd of citizens watching the soldiers marching by. 
During the afternoon of that day, February 17th, the whole 
<:>£ the Fifteenth Corps passed through the town and out on the 
^H^amden and Winnsboro' roads. The Seventeenth Corj^s did not 
liter the city at all, but crossed directly over to the Winnsboro' 


road from the pontoon-bridge at Broad Eiver, which was about 
four miles above the citj. 

After we had got, as it were, settled in ElaDton Dudcul's 
liouse, say about 2 f. m., I overhauled my pocket aocoiding to 
custom, to read more carefully the yarionB notes and memo- 
randa i*eccivcd during the day, and found the paper "wliidi Itfd 
been given me, as described, by one of Our escaped prisonen It 
proved to be the song of ^^ Sherman's March to the Sea^" wUdi 
had been composed by Adjutant S. H. M. Byen^ of llie E^A 
Iowa Infantry, when a prisoner in the asylum at OdaaH^ 
which had been beautifully written off by a fdknrfRiQDer, 
and handed to me in person. This appeured to maao good 
that I at once sent for Byers, attached him to my atafi^ provided 
him wnth horse and equipment, and took him aa tar aa.'Efcyette- 
ville, !N'orth Carolina, whence he was sent to WasU^gbon tf 
bearer of dispatches. He is now United States oonsnl atZorid^ 
Switzerland, where I have since been his guest I inaert the aong 
here for convenient reference and preservation. Byera aaid. that 
there was an excellent glee-club among the prisonera in Odiini'' 
l)ia, who used to sing it well, with an andience often of rBbel 
ladies : 


ComjtostJ by AdJ'ttant ]jYn:8, Fifth liAita Infantry. Arrangtd and twig ly tti /H^ 

ontrs in Columbia I'lrimn, 


(Jur cainp-firo3 shono bright on tho mountmn 

Tluit frowned on tho river below, 
As wo stood hj our puns in the morning, 

And eagerly watched for the foe ; 
When a rider came out of the darkness 

That hunj? over mountiun and tree, 
And slioutc-d, " ]>0Ys, up and bo ready ! 

For ShcTHian will march to tho sea ! " 


Then sanpr we a song of our chieftain, 

That echoed over river and lea; 
And the stars of our banner shone brighter 

When Sherman marched down to the sea t 



Then cheer npon cheer for bold Sherman 

Went np from each valley and glen, 
And the bugles reSchoed the mnsic 

That came from the lips of the men ; 
For we knew that the stars in onr banner 

More bright in their splendor wonld be, 
And that blessings from Northland would greet ns, 

When Sherman marched down to the sea I 

Then sang we a song, etc. 


Then forward, boys I forward to battle ! 

We inarched on our wearisome way, 
We stormed the wild hills of Hesaca — 

God bless those who fell on that day ! 
Then Kenesaw frowned in its glory. 

Frowned down on the flag of the free ; 
But the East and the West bore our standard, 

And Sherman marched on to the sea ! 

Then sang we a song, etc. 


Still onward we pressed, till our banners 

Swept out from Atlanta^s grim walls. 
And the blood of the patriot dampened 

The soil where the traitor-flag falls ; 
But we paused not to weep for the fallen. 

Who slept by each river and tree, 
Yet we twined them a wreath of the laurel, 

As Sherman marched down to the sea I 

Then sang we a song, etc. 


K)h^ proud was our army that morning, 

That stood where the pine darkly towers. 
When Sherman said, " Boys, you are weary, 

Bnt to-day fair Savannah is ours I " 
Then sang we the song of our chieftain. 

That echoed over river and lea. 
And the stars in our banner shone brighter 

When Sherman camped down by the sea I 


Toward erenisg of Febmaiy 17th, the mayoTi Dr. Good- 
win, came to mj quarters at Duncan's honsei and remarked that 
there was a lady in Columbia who professed to be a special 
friend of mine. On bis giving her name, I could not recall it, 
bnt inquired as to her maiden or familj name. He answered 
Poyas. It so happened that, when I was a lieatenant at Fort 
Moultrie, in 1842-'46, 1 used very often to visit a family of that 
name on the east branch of Cooper Biyer, about forty miles 
from Fort Moultrie, and to hunt with the son, Mr. James Poyas, 
an elegant young fellow and a fine sportsman. His father, 
mother, and several sisters, composed the family, and were ex- 
tremely hospitable. One of the ladies was very fond of paint- 
ing in water-colors, which was one of my weaknesses, and on 
one occasion I had presented her with a volume treating of water- 
colors. Of course, I was glad to renew the acquaintance^ and 
proposed to Dr. Goodwin that we ehould walk to her house and 
visit this lady, which we did« The house stood beyond the 
Charlotte depot, in a large lot, was of frame, wiUi a high 
porch, which was reached by a set of steps outside. Entering 
this yard, I noticed ducks and chickens, and a general air of 
peace and comfort that was really pleasant to behold at that 
time of universal desolation ; tlie lady in question met us at 
the head of the steps and invited us into a parlor which was per- 
fectly neat and well furnished. After inquiring about her father, 
mother, sisters, and especially her brother James, my special 
friend, I could not help saying that I was pleased to notice 
that our men had not handled her house and premises as roughly 
as was their wont. "I owe it to you, general,*' she answered. 
" Not at all. I did not know you were here till a few minutes 
agi>.** She reiterated that she was indebted to me for the per- 
fect safety of her house and property, and added, " You re- 
member, when you were at our house on Cooper River in 1845, 
you g:\ve me a book ; " and she handed me the book in ques- 
tion, on the fly-leaf of which was vrritten : " To Miss Poyas, 

M-ith the compliments of TT. T. Sherman, First-lieutenant Third 
Artillery.'' She then exj^lained tliat, as our army approached 
Columbia, tliore was a doubt iu her mind whether the terrible 


Sherman who was devastating the land were W. T. Sherman 
V T. W. Sherman, both known to be generals in the Northern 
umj; bnt, on the supposition that he was her old acquaintance, 
^hen Wade Hampton's cavalry drew out of the city, calling 
>nt that the Yankees were coming, she armed herself with this 
KX)k, and awaited the crisis. Soon the shouts about the market- 
louse announced that the Yankees had come ; very soon men 
vere seen running up and down the streets ; a parcel of them 
poured over the fence, began to chase the chickens and ducks, 
ind to enter her house. She observed one large man, with full 
>eard, who exercised some authority, and to him she appealed in 
he name of " his general" " What do you know of Uncle 
Jilly t '* " Why," she said, " when he was a young man he used 
o be our friend in Charleston, and here is a book he gave me." 
lie officer or soldier took the book, looked at the inscription, 
nd, turning to his fellows, said : ^^Boys, that's so ; that's Uncle 
{lily's writing, for I have seen it often before." lie at once 
ommanded the party to stop pillaging, and left a man in charge 
f the house, to protect her until the regular provost-guard should 
e established. I then asked her if the regular guard or sen- 
inel had been as good to her. She assured me that he was a 
cry nice young man ; that he had been telling her all about his 
amily in Iowa ; and that at that very instant of time he was in 
nother room minding her baby. Now, this lady had good sense 
nd tact, and had thus turned aside a party who, in five minutes 
lore, would have rifled her premises of all that was good to eat 
r wear. I made her a long social visit, and, before leaving 
/olombia, gave her a half -tierce of rice and about one hundred 
>onnds of ham from our own mess-stores. 

In like manner, that same evening I found in Mrs. Simons 
nother acquaintance — the wife of the brother of Hon. James 
limons, of Charleston, who had been Miss Wragg. ' When Colum- 
ia was on fire that night, and her house in danger, I had her 
amily and effects carried to my own headquarters, gave them 
ay own room and bed, and, on leaving Columbia the next day, 
applied her with a half-barrel of hams and a half -tierce of rice. 
mention these specific facts to show that, personally, I had no 



malice or desire to destroy that city or its inhabitants, as is gen- 
erally believed at the South. 

Having walked over much of the suburbs of Columbia in the 
afternoon, And being tired, I lay down on a bed in Blantott 
Duncan's house to rest. Soon after dark I became consdoos 
that a bright light was shining on the walls ; and, calling some 
one of my staff (Major Nichols, I think) to inquire the cause, 
he said there seemed to be a house on fire down about thenuu^ 
ket-house. The same high wind still prevailed, and, fearing the 
consequences, I bade him go in i)er8on to see if the provoefc- 
guard were doing its duty. He soon returned, and reported that 
the block of buildings directly opposite the burning cotton of 
that morning was on fire, and that it was spreading ; but he had 
found General Woods on the ground, with plenty of men trying 
to put the fire out, or, at least, to prevent its extension. The 
fire continued to increase, and the whole heavens became Inrid. 
I dispatched messenger after messenger to Generals Howard, 
Logan, and Woods, and received from them repeated assurances 
that all was being done that could be done, but that the high 
wind was spreading the flames beyond all control. These gen- 
eral officers were on the ground all night, and Hazen's division 
liad been brought into tlie city to assist Woods's di\'ision, already 
there. About eleven o'clock at night I went down-town my- 
self, Colonel Dayton with me; we walked to Mr. Simons'S 
house, from which I could see the flames rising high in the air, 
and could hear the roaring of the fire. I advised the ladies to 
move to my headquarters, had our own headquarter-wagons 
hitched up, and their effects carried there, as a place of greater 
safety. The whole air was full of sparks and of flying masses 
of cotton, shingles, etc., some of which were carried four or five 
blocks, and started new fires. The men seemed generally undei 
good control, and certainly labored hard to girdle the fire, to pre- 
vent its spreading ; but, so long as the high wind prevailed, it was 
simply beyond human possibility. Fortunately, about 3 or 4 a. m., 
the wind moderated, and gradually the fire was got under control; 
but it had burned out the very- heart of the city, embracing sev- 
eral churches, the old State-House, and the school or asylum of 


hat very Sister of Charity who had appealed for my personal 
)rotection. Nickerson's Hotel, in wliich several of my staff were 
[nartered, was burned down, but the houses occupied by myself, 
Generals Howard and Logan, were not burned at all. Many of 
he people thought that this fire was deliberately planned and 
xecuted. This is not true. It was accidental, and in my judg- 
aent b^an with the cotton wliich General Hampton's men had 
et fire to on leaving the city (whether by his orders or not is not 
oaterial), which fire was partially subdued early in the day by 
nr men ; but, when night came, the high wind fanned it again 
ito full blaze, carried it against the frame-houses, which caught 
ike tinder, and soon spread beyond our control. 

This whole subject has since been thoroughly and judicially 
ivestigated, in some cotton cases, by the mixed commission on 
Lmerican and British claims, under the Treaty of Washington, 
rhich commission failed to award a verdict in favor of the 
!nglish claimants, and thereby settled the fact that the destruc- 
lon of property in Columbia, during that night, did not result 
rom the acts of the General Government of the United States 
-that is to say, from my army. In my official report of this con- 
agration, I distinctly charged it to General Wade Hampton, and 
onfess I did so pointedly, to shake the faith of his people in 
im, for he was in my opinion a braggart, and professed to be 
lie special champion of South Carolina. 

The morning sun ')f February 18th rose bright and clear over 
rained city. About half of it was in ashes and in smouldering 
eaps. Many of the people were houseless, and gathered in groups 
1 the suburbs, or in the open parks and spaces, around their 
santy piles of furniture. General Howard, in concert with the 
layor, did all that was possible to provide other houses for 
liem ; and by my authority he turned over to the Sisters of 
!!harity the Methodist College, and to the mayor five hundred 
eef-eattle, to help feed the people ; I also gave the mayor (Dr. 
Goodwin) one hundred muskets, with which to arm a guard to 
laintain order after we should leave the neighborhood. During 
le 18th and 19th we remained in Columbia, General Howard's 
■oops engaged in tearing up and destroying the railroad, back 


toward the TVateree, while a strong detail, under flie ""™^***«^ 
snpervifiion of Colonel O. M. Poe, IJnited Statea Enj^neerat 
destroyed the State Arsenal, which was found to be well mxp^&^i 
witih i^ot, shell, and ammnnition« These were hanled in wagufe,w ui 
to the Saluda Biver, nnder the Bnperyision of Oolonfil T ^h tr^ 
chief of ordnance, and emptied into deep water, canaixig a 
serious accident hj the bursting of a percossionHdiell, as il 
another on the margin of the water. The flame followed 
a train of powder which had sifted outy reached die wagon% Bt^Htll 
partially loaded, and exploded them, 

destroying several wagons and teams of mnlea^ We abo c=]s- 

stroy ed several valuable f ounderies and the fiMsbny ot 

money. The dies had been carried away, but about 

presses remained. There was also found an iirmMwaft quant^Etf 

of money, in various stages of manufacture, wbidi our 

spent and gambled with in the most lavish numner. 

Having utterly ruined Columbia, the right wing began 
march northward, toward Winnsboro', on the SOth, 
we reached on the 21st, and found General Sloeum, with 
left wing, who had come by the way of Alston* Thence 
right wing was turned eastward, toward Cheraw, and Fayett:^ 

ville, North Carolina, to cross the Catawba Biver at Peay '* 

Ferry. The cavalry was ordered to follow the railroad norC^^ 
as far as Chester, and then to turn east to Bod^ Ifonn..: — ^ 
the point indicated for the passage of the left wing. In pe::^ ^ 

son I reached Eocky Mount on the 22d, with the Twentiot '^ 

Corps, which laid its pontoon-bridge and crossed over dnrin^ *'f! 
the 23d. Kilpatrick arrived the next day, in the midst 
heavy rain, and was instructed to cross the Catawba at onee^ b^ 
night, and to move up to Lancaster, to make believe we 
bound for Charlotte, to which point I heard that 
had directed all his detachments, including a corps of Hood*-^— * 
old army, which had been marching parallel with us, but h fl i ^ 
failed to make junction with the forces inamediately oppoflui. -'^f 
us. Of course, I had no purpose of going to Charlotte, for tbm^^^ 
right wing was already moving rapidly toward FayettevillMi ^ 
North Carolina. The rain was so heavy and persistent that Or^^^ 



Catawba River rose fast, and soon after I liad crossed the 
pontoon-bridge at Eocky Monnt it was carried away, leaving 
Greneral Davis, with the Fonrteenth Corps, on the west bank. 
The roads were infamous, so I halted the Twentieth Corps at 
Hanging' Bock for some days, to allow time for the Fourteenth 
to get over. 

General Davis had infinite difficulty in reconstructing his 
bridge, and was compelled to use the fifth chains of his wagons 
for anchor-chains, so that we were delayed nearly a week in that 
neighborhood. While in camp at Hanging Eock two prisoners 
were brought to me — one a chaplain, the other a boy, son of 
Richard Bacot, of Charleston, whom I had known as a cadet at 
West Point. They were just from Charleston, and had been 
sent away by General Hardee in advance, because he was, they 
said, evacuating Charleston. Rumors to the same effect had 
reached me through the negroes, and it was, moreover, reported 
that Wilmington, North Carolina, was in possession of the 
Yankee troops; so that I had every reason to be satisfied that 
our inarch was fully reaping all the fruits we could possibly ask 
for. Charleston was, in fact, evacuated by General Hardee on 
the 18th of February, and was taken possession of by a brigade- 
of General Foster's troops, commanded by General SchimmeL- 
pfennig, the same day. Hardee had availed himself of his only 
remaining raQroad, by Florence to Cheraw ; had sent there much, 
of his ammunition and stores, and reached it with the effective 
part of the garrison in time to escape across the Fedee River 
before our arrival. Wilmington was captured by General Terry 
on the 22d of February ; but of this important event we only 
knew by the vague rumors which reached us through rebel 

General Jeff. C. Davis got across the Catawba during the 
27ih, and the general march was resumed on Cheraw. Kilpat- 
riek remained near Lancaster, skirmishing with Wheeler's and 
Hampton's cavalry, keeping up the delusion, that we proposed 
to move on Charlotte and Salisbury, but with orders to watch 
the progress of the Fourteenth Corps, and to act in concert with 
it| on its left rear. On the 1st of March I w^ at Finlay's 


Bridge across Lynch^i CSreek, the roftda io bed flmt we had to 
oordnroy nearly every foot of the way; bat I wis m eomimni- 
cation with all parts of the armyi which had met no seaov 
opposition from the enemy. On the Sd of Msroh we cntmd 
the village of Chesterfield, slrirmishing with Bntlei'k oKokjf 
which -gave gromid rapidly. There I received a monnip ftrw 
General Howard, who reported that he was already in Ctetf 
with the Seventeenth Corps, and that the Fifteenth was neirit 

General Hardee had retreated eastward across thePedeo^liiiB- 
ing the bridge. I therefore directed the left wing to nusfdi fir 
Sneedsboro', abont ten miles above Oheraw, to eroes the Ms 
there, while I in person proposed to cross over and join fheif^ 
wing in Cheraw. Early in the morning of the 8d of MbAI 
rode out of Chesterfield along with the Twentieth Ooip% irinA 
filled the road, forded Thompson's Gred^ and, at the tap of As 
hill beyond, f omid a road branching oS to the lig^ wUeh «** 
responded with the one on my map leading to Ghenw. 8e» 
ing a n^o standing by the road-side, looking at the tnMfi 
passing, I inquired of him what road that was. '* Him leid to 
Cheraw, master 1" "Is it a good road, and how far!** **A 
very good road, and eight or ten miles." " Any gfousaSimt^ 
" Oh ! no, master, dey is gone two days ago ; you ooold bm 
.played cards on der coat-tails, dey was in sich a hnnyl" I 
was on my Lexington horse, who was very handsome and xeBtiv^ 
so I made signal to my staff to follow, as I proposed to p 
without escort. I turned my horse down the road, and the vi 
of the staff followed. General Barry took np tlie qneitiotf 
about the road, and asked the same negro what he was doiv 
theiiB. He answered, " Dey say Massa Sheiman will be 
along soon 1 " " Why," said General Barry, " that was Qsorf 
Sherman you were talking to." The poor negro, almost hi tto 
attitude of prayer, exclaimed : " De great Gted I jnst look itto 
horse I " He ran up and trotted by my side for a mile orH^ 
and gave me all the information he possessed, but he semwdfc 
admire the horse more than the rider. 

We reached Cheraw in a couple of hours in a driulingiv^ 


1865.] CAMPAIGN OF THE 0AR0LINA8. 291 

and, wMe waiting for our wagons to come up, I staid with Gen* 
eral Blair in a large house, the property of a blockade-runner, 
whose family remained. General Howard occupied another 
house farther down-town. He had abeady ordered his pontoon- 
bridge to be laid across the Pedee, there a large, deep, navigable 
stream, and Mower's division was already across, skirmishing 
with the enemy about two miles out. Cheraw was found to be 
full of stores which had been sent up from Charleston prior to 
its evacuation, and which could not be removed. I was satisfied, 
from inquiries, that General Hardee had with him only the 
Charleston garrison, that the enemy had not divined our move- 
ments, and that consequently they were still scattered from 
Charlotte around to Florence, then behind us. Having thus 
secured the passage of the Pedee, I felt no uneasiness about 
the future, because there remained no further great impedi- 
ment between us and Cape Fear Eiver, which I felt assured 
was by that time in possession of our friends. The day was 
BO wet that we all kept in-doors; and about noon General 
Blair invited us to take lunch with him. We passed down 
into the basement dining-room, where the regular family 
table was spread with an excellent meal; and during its 
progress I was asked to take some wine, which stood upon 
the table in venerable bottles. It was so very good that I in- 
quired where it came from. General Blair simply asked, " Do 
you like it}" but I insisted upon knowing where he had got 
it ; he only replied by asking if I liked it, and wanted some. 
He afterward sent to my bivouac a case containing a dozen 
bottles of the finest madeira I ever tasted ; and I learned 
that lie had captured, in Cheraw, the wine of some of the old 
iristocratic families of Charleston, who had sent it up to Cheraw 
for safety, and heard afterward that Blair had found about 
eight wagon-loads of this wine, which he distributed to the army 
generaUy, in very fan- proportions. 

After finishing our lunch, as we passed out of the dining- 
room, General Blair asked me if I did not want some saddle- 
blankets, or a rug for my tent, and, leading me into the hall to 
a space under the stairway, he pointed out a pile of carpets which 


had also been sent up from Charleston for safety. After onr 
headquarter-wagous got up, and onr bivouac was established in a 
field near by, I sent my orderly (Walter) over to Greneral Blair, 
and he came back staggering under a load of carpets, out of 
which the officers and escort made excellent tent-rogs, saddle- 
cloths, and blankets. There was an immense amount of stores 
in Cheraw, which were used or destroyed ; among them twen- 
ty-four guns, two thousand muskets, and thirty-six hundred 
barrels of gun]>owder. By the carelessness of a soldier, an 
immense pile of tliis powder was exploded, which shook tlie 
town badly, and killed and maimed several of our men. 

Wo remained in or near Cheraw till the 6th of March, ij 
which time the army was mostly across the Pedee River, and 
was prepared to resume the march on Fayetteville. In a liODae 
where General Hardee had been, I found a late J!few T(ni 
Tribune^ of fully a month later date than any I had seen. It 
contained a mass of news of great interest to us, and one abort 
paragraj)h which I thought extremely mischievous. I think it 
was an editorial, to the effect that at last the editor had the 
satisfaction to inform his readers that General Sherman vonld 
next be heard from about Goldsboro', because his supply-vessels 
from Savannah were known to be rendezvousing at Morehead 
City. Now, I knew that General Ilardee had read that same 
paper, and that he would be perfectly able to draw his own in- 
ferences. Up to that moment I had endeavored so to feign 
to our left that we had completely misled our antagomsts; but 
this was no longer possible, and I concluded that we must be 
ready for the concentration in our front of all the force subject 
to General Jos. Johnston's orders, for I was there also informed 
that he had been restored to the full command of tlie Confede- 
rate forces in South and North Carolina. 

On the 6th of March I crossed the Pedee, and all the army 
marched for Fayetteville : the Seventeenth Corps kept well to 
the right, to make room ; the Fifteenth Corps marched by * 
direct road ; the Fourteenth Corps also followed a direct road 
from Sneedsboro', where it had crossed the Pedee ; and the 
Twentieth Corps, which had come into Cheraw for the convene 


ience of tlie pontoon-bridge, diverged to the left, so as to enter 
Fayetteville next after the Fourteenth Corps, which was ap- 
pointed to leadinto Fajetteville. Kilpatrick held his cavalry still 
fiuther to the left rear on the roads from Lancaster, by way of 
Wadesboro' and New Gilead, so as to cover our trains from 
Hampton's and Wheeler's cavalry, who had first retreated toward 
the north. I traveled with the Fifteenth Corps, and on the Sth 
of March reached Laurel Hill, North Carolina. Satisfied that our 
troops must be at Wilmington, I determined to send a message 
tliere ; I called for my man. Corporal Pike, whom I had res- 
ened as before described, at Columbia, who was then travel- 
ing with our escort, and instructed him in disguise to work his 
Way to the Cape Fear Eiver, secure a boat, and float down to 
J^ilmington to convey a letter, and to report our approach. I 
ilso called on General Howard for another vohmtcer, and ho 
wrought me a very clever young sergeant, who is now a com- 
lissioned officer in the regular army. Each of tliese got off 
ming the night by separate routes, bearing the following message, 
^uced to the same cipher we used in telegraphic messages : 


X2f TUX FutLD, Laubel lIiLL, Wednesday ^ March 8, 1SC5. ) 

jmmanding Officer^ Wilmington^ Korth Carolina: 

ITe are marchmg for Fayetteville, will be there Saturday, Sunday, and 
soda J, and will then march for GoldBboro\ 

If possible, send a boat up Cape Fear Hiver, and have word conveyed 

General Schoficld that I expect to meet him about Goldaboro\ Wo are 

well and have done finely. The rains make our roads difficult, and may 

\aj us aboat Fayetteville, in which case I would like to have some bread, 

^, and coffee. We have abundance of all else. I expect to reach 

ildaboro' by the 20th instant. 

"W. T. Sherman, Major- General, 

On the 9th I was with the Fifteenth Corps, and toward 
eniug reached a little church called Bethel, in the woods, in 
lich we took refuge in a terrible storm of rain, which poured 
. night, making the roads awful. All the men were at work 
rduroying the roads, using fence-rails and split saplings, and 
ery foot of the way had thus to be corduroyed to enable tlie 


artillery and wagons to pass. On the 10th we made Bome little 
progress ; on the 11th I reached Fayetteville, and found tkt 
General Hardee, followed by "Wade Hampton's cavalrr, had 
barely escaped across Cape Fear Biver, bnming the bridge whidi 
I had hoped to save. On reachmg Fayetteville I found Gen- 
eral Slocnm already in possession with the Fonrtecnth Coips^ 
and all the rest of the army was near at hand. A day or two 
before, General Ealpatrick, to onr left rear, had divided his force 
into two parts, occupying roads behind the Twentieth Corps^ 
interposing between our infantry columns and Wade Hampton's 
cavalry. The latter, doubtless to make junction with Gen- 
eral Hardee, in Fayetteville, broke across this line, captured 
the house in which General Kilpatrick and the brigadcKXHn- 
mander. General Spencer, were, and for a time hdd poesession 
of the camp and artillery of the brigade. However, Greneral 
Kilpatrick and most of his men escaped into a swamp with their 
arms, reorganized and returned, catching Hampton's men in 
turn, scattered and drove them away, recovering most of to 
camp and artillery ; but Hampton got off with Ealpatrick^s pri- 
vate horses and a couple hundred prisoners, of which he 
boasted much in passing through Fayetteville. 

It was also rei)oited that, in the morning after Hardee's army 
was all across the bridge at Cape Fear Kiver, Hampton, with a 
small body-guard, had remained in town, ready to retreat and 
burn the bridge as soon as our forces made their appearance. 
He was getting breakfast at the hotel when the alarm was gi^en, 
when he and his escort took saddle, but soon realized that the 
alarm came from a set of our foragers, who, as usual, were ex- 
tremely bold and rash. On these he turned, scattered them. 
killing some and making others prisoners ; among them General 
Howard's favorite scout, Captain Duncan. Hampton then crossed 
the bridge and bunied it. 

I took up my quarters at the old United States Arsenal, 
which was in fine order, and had been much enlarsred br the 
Confederate authorities, who never dreamed that an in^'adi^ 
army would reach it from the west ; and I also found in Faye**^ 
villo the widow and daughter of my first captain (General 


Ghflds), of the Third Artillery, learned that her Bon Fred had 
been llie ordnanceK)fficer in diarge of the arsenal, and had of 
Donrse fled with Hardee's army. 

During the 11th the whole army dosed down upon Fayette- 
nlle, and immediate preparations were made to lay two pontoon- 
bridges, one near the burned bridge, and another about four miles 
lower down. 

Sunday, March 12th, was a day of Sabbath stillness in Fayette- 
rflle. The people generally attended their churches, for they 
»rere a very pious people, descended in a large measure from the 
>ld Scotch Covenanters, and our men too were resting from the 
ioilfl and labors of six weeks of as hard marching as ever fell 
x> the lot of soldiers. Shortly after noon was heard in the dis- 
auce the shrill whistle of a steamboat, which came nearer and 
learer, and soon a shout, long and continuous, was raised down 
)y the river, which spread farther and farther, and we all felt 
hat it meant a messenger from home. The effect was electric, 
md no one can realize the feeling unless, like us, he has been for 
nonths cut off from all communication with friends, and com- 
)elled to listen to the croakings and prognostications of open 
snemies. But in a very few minutes came up through the town 
o the arsenal on the plateau behind a group of officers, among 
whom, was a large, florid seafaring man, named Ainsworth, 
rearing a small mail-bag from General Terry, at Wilmington, 
laving left at 2 p. m. the day before. Our couriers had got 
hiongh safe from Laurel Hill, and this was the prompt reply. 

As in the case of our former march from Atlanta, intense 
nziety had been felt for our safety, and General Terry had 
•een prompt to open communication. After a few minutes' 
onference with Captain Ainsworth about the capacity of his 
oat, and the state of facts along the river, I instructed him 
J be ready to start back at 6 p. m., and ordered Captain 
tyers to get ready to carry dispatches to Washington. I also 
athorized General Howard to send back by this opportunity 
dime of the fugitives who had traveled with his army all the 
ray from Columbia, among whom were Mrs. Feaster and her 
wo beautiful daughters. 



I immediately prepared letters for Secretary Stanton, Gen- 
erals Halleck and Grant, and Generals Schofield, Foster, EastoD, 
and Beckwith, all of which have been published, but I indude 
here only those to the Secretary of War, and Generals Grant 
and Terry, as samples of the whole. 

Headquarters Militart Division or the IblississiPK, ) 

X2r THE Field, Fatetteville, Nobth Cabouka, Sunday ^ March 12, 18(5. [ 

Hon. E. M. Stanton, Secretary of War, 

Deab Sib : I know yon will be pleased to hear that my army has reacbed 
this point, and has opened commimication with Wilmington. A tng-boit 
came np this morning, and will start back at 6 p. x. 

I have written a letter to General Grant, the substance of which he will 
doubtless communicate, and it must suffice for me to tell yon what I know 
will give yon pleasure — ^that I have done all that I proposed, and the froits 
seem to me ample for the time employed. Charleston, Georgetown, and Wil- 
mington, are incidents, while the utter demolition of the railroad system of 
South Carolina, and the utter destruction of the enemy's arsenals of Colom- 
bia, Cheraw, and Fayetteville, are the principals of the movement. These 
points were regarded as inaccessible to us, and now no place in the Con- 
federacy is safe against the army of the West. Let Lee hold on to Bicb- 
mond, and we will destroy his country ; and then of what use is Bichmo&df 
He must come out and fight us on open ground, and for that we must ever 
be ready. Let him stick behind his parapets, and he will perish. 

I remember well what you asked me, and think I am on the right 
road, though a long one. My anny is as imited and cheerful as ever, and 
as full of confidence in itself and its leaders. It is utterly impoaable for 
mo to enumerate what wo have done, but I inclose a slip just handed id^ 
which is but partial. At Columbia and Cheraw we destroyed nearly all ^^ 
gunpowder and cartridges which the Confederacy had in this part of th^ 
country. Tbis arsenal is in fine order, and has been much enlarged, 
cannot leave a detachment to hold it, therefore shall bum it, blow it ^y 
with gunpowder, and then with rams knock down ita walls. I tak^ 
for granted the United States will never again tnist North Corolina with 
arsenal to appropriate at her pleasure. 

Hoping that good fortune may still attend my army, I remain yc^^ 
servant, W. T. Suerman, Major- General. 

IIkapquarters Military Dmsioy of the Mississippi, \ 
IN THE Field, Fayetteviixe, North Carolina, March 12, 1865. ) 

Lieutenant' General U. S. Gbaxt, commanding United States Army^ Ci^ 
Pointy Virginia, 
DsAB Gexbbal: We reached this place yesterday at noon; Hardee, ^ 


aal, retreating across the Cape Fear, burning his bridges ; but our pon- 
OQS will be np to-daj, and, with as little delay as possible, I will be after 
m toward Goldsboro'. 

A tog has just come up from Wilmington, and before I get off from here, 
h<^ to get from Wilmington some shoes and stockings, sugar, coffee, 
id floor. We are abundantly supplied with all else, having in a measure 
red off the country. 

The army is in splendid health, condition, and spirits, though we have 
id foul weather, and roads that would have stopped travel to almost any 
her body of men I ever heard of. 

Our march was substantially what I designed — straight on Columbia, 
igning on Branch ville and Augusta. We destroyed, in passing, the railroad 
na the Edisto nearly up to Aiken ; again, from Orangeburg to the Con- 
ree; again, from Columbia down to Kingsville on the Wateree, and up 
ward Charlotte as far as the Chester line ; thence we turned east on 
leraw and Fayetteville. At Columbia we destroyed inmiense arsenals 
d railroad establishments, among which were forty-three cannon. At 
leraw we found also machinery and material of war sent from Charleston, 
long which were twenty-five guns and thirty-six hundred barrels of 
wder; and here we find about twenty guns and a magnificent United 
fttes' arsenal. 

We cannot afford to leave detachments, and I shall therefore destroy 
is Talnable arsenal, so the enemy shall not have its use ; and the United 
Bites should never again confide such valuable property to a people who 
re betrayed a trust. 

I eoold leave here to-morrow, but wont to clear my columns of the 
at crowd of refugees and negroes that encumber us. Some I will send 
wn the river in boats, and the rest to Wilmington by land, under small 
sort, as soon as we are across Cape Fear River. 

I hope you have not been uneasy about us, and that the fruits of this 
irch will be appreciated. It had to be made not only to destroy the val< 
Ue depots by the way, but for its incidents in the necessary fall of Charles- 
0, Georgetown, and Wilmington. If I can now add Goldsboro' without 
3 muoh cost, I will be in a position to aid you materially in the spring 

Jos. Johnston may try to interpose between roe here and Schofiold 
out Newborn ; but I think he will not try that, but concentrate his scat- 
red armies at Raleigh, and I will go straight at him as soon as I get our 
an reclothed and our wagons reloaded. 

Keep everybody busy, and let Stoneman push toward Greensboro' or 
isrlotte firom Knoxville ; even a feint in that quarter will be most im- 

The railroad from Charlotte to Danville is all that is left to the enemy, 


and it will not do for me to go there, on account of the red-dij hflb which 
are impassable to wheels in wet weather. 

I expeot to make a junction with General Schofield in ten dajn 

Tours truly, W. T. SnBBMAar, M<i^Gmnl 


EST THE Fi£LD, Fatxttbvillb, Nosth Cabouxa, MotA 1% 1815. [ 

Major- General Tebby, eommanding United Stain Foreee^ WUmx^l^ 
North Carolina, 

Gensbal : I have just received your message by the tng which left "^^ 
mington at 2 p. m. yesterday, which arriyed here without trouble. The 
scout who brought mo your cipher-message started back last night irith my 
answers, which are superseded by the fact of yonr opening the river. 

General Howard just reports that he has secured one of the eneny'i 
steamboats below the city. General Slocum will try to secore two othen 
known to be above, and we will load them with refugeea (white and Uadj 
who have clung to our skirts, impeded our movements, and consumed oar 

We have swept the country well from Savannah to here, and the men and 
animals are in fine condition. Had it not been for the fonl weather, I wooU 
have caught Hardee at Cheraw or here ; but at Oolumbia, Gherav, tn^ 
here, we have captured immense stores, and destroyed machinery, gona, mt- 
munition, and property, of inestimable value to our enemy. At all poinw 
ho has fled from ns, " standing not on the order of his going." 

The people of South Carolina, instead of feeding Leo's army, will now 
call on Lee to feed them. 

I want you to send mo all the shoes, stockings, drawers, sugar, coffee, and 
flour, you can spare ; finish the loads with oats or corn. Have the ^^^ 
escorted, and let them run at night at any risk. AVe must not give ^* 
for Jos. Johnston to concentrate at Goldsboro'. "We cannot prevent his ^^' 
centrating at Raleigh, but ho shall have no rest. I want General Scho^^ 
to go on with his railroad from New hem as far as he can, and you sl^^,,. 
do the same from "Wilmington. If wo can get the roads to and secure G<^ 

boro' by April 10th, it will bo soon enough ; but every day now is woi 
million of dollars. 1 can whip Jos. Johnston provided he does not 
one of my corps in flank, and I will see that the army marches henc«^^ 
Goldsboro' in compact form. 

I must rid our array of from twenty to thirty thousand nsoless mout 
as many to go down Capo Fear as possible, and the rest to go in vehi< 
or on captured horses via Clinton to "VN'ilmington. 

I thank you for the energetic action that has marked your course, 
shall be most happy to meet you, I am, truly your friend, 

"W. T. Sherman, Major-General 


In quick succession I received otiier messages from General 
Teny, of older date, and therefore superseded by that brought 
by the tug Davidson, viz., by two naval officers, who had come 
up partly by canoes and partly by land ; General Terry had 
also sent a cavalry regiment to search for us, under Colonel 
Eerwin, who had dispatched two officers and fifty men, who 
reached us at Fayetteville ; so that, by March 12th, I was in full 
oommnnication with General Terry and the outside world. Still, 
I was anxious to reach Goldsboro', there to make junction with 
Gteneral Schofield, so as to be ready for the next and last stage 
of the war. I then knew that my special antagonist. General 
Job. Johnston, was back, with part of his old army ; that he 
wonld not be misled by feints and false reports, and would 
somehow compel me to exercise more caution than I had hitherto 
done. I then over-estimated his force at thirty-seven thousand 
infantry, supposed to be made up of S. D. Lee's corps, four 
thousand ; Cheatham's, five thousand ; Hoke's, eight thousand ; 
Hardee's, ten thousand ; and other detachments, ten thousand ; 
with Hampton's, "Wheeler's, and Butler's cavalry, about eight 
thousand. Of these, only Hardee and the cavaby were imme- 
diately in onr front, while the bulk of Johnston's army was sup- 
posed to be collecting at or near Baleigh. I was determined, 
however, to give him as little time for organization as possible, 
and accordingly crossed Cape Fear River, with all the army, 
during the 13th and 14th, leaving one division as a rear-guard, 
until the arsenal could be completely destroyed. This was de- 
liberately and completely leveled on the 14th, when fire was 
ipplied to the wreck. Little other damage was done at Fayette- 

On the 14th the tug Davidson again arrived from Wilming- 
ton, with General Dodge, quartermaster, on board, reporting 
that there was no clothing to be had at Wilmington ; but he 
brought up some sugar and cofiee, which were most welcome, 
and some oats. He was followed by a couple of gunboats, under 
command of Captain Young, United States Navy, who reached 
Fayetteville after I had left, and undertook to patrol the river 
■s long as the stage of water would permit ; and General Dodge 


also piomiied to nae the captmed rtesmboatB for a lika purpoaeu 
Heaatimey also^ I had sent orders to Geaetal Sdiofield, at Kew- 
beni| and to General Teny, at Wihnmgton, to move with their 
efEective forces stiaig^ for Goldsboio^i where I expected to 
meet them by the 30th of March. 

On the 15th of March the whole army was across Cape 
Fear Blver, and at once began its mardi for Goldsboro' ; ^ne 
Seventeentii Oorps still on the right, the fifteenth neztinordery 
then the Fonrteenth and Twentieth on the extreme left ; the 
cavalry acting in dose concert with llie left flank. With almost 
a certainty of being attacked on this flank^ I had instrocted 
€^eral Slocnm to send liis corps-trains nnder strong escort by 
on interior road, holding f onr divisions ready for immediate 
battle. General Howard was in like manner ordered to keep 
his trains well to his right, and to have f onr divisions nnencom- 
bered, about six miles ahead of General Slocnm, wiUiin easy 

In the mean time, I had dispatched by land to Wilming- 
ton a train of refogees who had followed the army all the way 
from Columbia, South Carolina, nnder an escort of two himdred 
men, commanded by Major John A. Winson (One Hundred and 
Sixteenth Illinois Infantry), so that we were disencumbered, 
and prepared for instant battle on our left and exposed flank. 

In person I accompanied General Slocum, and during the 
night of March 15th was thirteen miles out on the Baleigh 
i\\a<l. This flank followed substantially a road along Cape 
Fear River north, encountered pretty stubborn resistance by 
HaivWs infantry^ artillery, and cavalry, and the ground favored 
oar enemy ; for the deep river. Cape Fear, was on his right, and 
XoTtK River on his loft> forcing ns to attack him square in 
ftwnt I pTopo«Hi to drive Hardee well beyond Aveiysboro', 
and then to turn to the right by Bentonsville for Gt)ldsboro'. 
During the \i\v it mined wry hardy and I had taken refuge in 
an old t\vt>cr*h*^^ where a prisoner of war was brought to me 
v«»ent Kvk from the skirmishJine by General Kilpatrick), who 
p^>vty\ t*> be vVxvtel Albert Rhett, former commander of Fort 
Snmter. He was a tall, decider, and handsome young man. 


dresBed in the moBt approved rebel nmform, with high jack- 
boots Leantifully stitched, and was dreadfullj mortified to 
find himself a prisoner in onr hands. General Frank Blair 
liappened to be with me at the moment, and wo were much 
aznnsed at Ehett's outspoken disgust at having been captured 
Tvdthont a fight. He said he was a brigade commander, and that 
Iiis brigade that day was Hardee's rear-guard ; that his command 
^WBS composed mostly of the recent garrisons of thd batteries of 
CSfaarleston Harbor, and had little experience in woodcraft ; that 
lie mras giving ground to us as fast as Hardee's army to his rear 
moved back, and during this operation he was with a single aide 
in the woods, and was captured by two men of Eilpatrick's skir- 
mlBh-line that was following up his retrograde movement. These 
meii called on him to surrender, and ordered him, in language 
more forcible than polite, to turn and ride back. He first sup- 
posed these men to be of Hampton's cavalry, and threatened to 
report them to General £[ampton for disrespectful language ; 
but lie was soon undeceived, and was conducted to Eilpatrick, 
who sent him back to General Slocum's guard. 

The rain was falling heavily, and, our wagons coming up, we 
went into camp there, and had Bhett and General Blair to take 
sapper with us, and our conversation was full and quite interest- 
ing. In due time, however, Ehett was passed over by General 
Blocom to his provost-guard, with orders to be treated with due 
respect, and was furnished with a horse to ride. 

The next day (the 16th) the opposition continued stubborn, 
and near Averysboro' Hardee had taken up a strong positioU} 
before which General Slocum deployed Jackson's division (oi 
the Twentieth Corps), with part of Ward's. Kilpatrick was on 
his right front. Coming up, I advised that a brigade should 
nuike a wide circuit by the left, and, if possible, catch this line 
in flank. The movement was completely successful, the fii-st 
line of the enemy was swept away, and we captured the larger 
part of Rhett's brigade, two hundred and seventeen men, in- 
dnding Captain Macbeth's battery of three guns, and buried 
one hundred and eight dead. 

The deployed lines (Ward's and Jackson's) pressed on, and 


found Hardee again intrenelied ; bnt the next morning he was 
gone, in full retreat toward Smithfield. In tlus action, called 
the battle of Averysboro', we lost twelve officers and sixty^ve 
men killed, and four hundred and seventy-Beyen men wounded; 
a serious loss, because every wounded man had to be carried in 
an ambulance. The rebel wounded (sixty-eight) were carried to 
a house near by, all surgical operations necessary were perfonned 
by our surgeons, and then these wounded men were left in care 
of an officer and four men of the rebel prisoners, with a Bcant; 
supply of food, which was the best we could do for them. In 
person I visited this house while the surgeons were at work, 
with arms and legs lying around loose, in the yard and on 
the porch ; and in a room on a bed lay a pale, handsome young 
fellow, whose left arm had just been cut off near the shoulder. 
Some one used my name, when he asked, in a feeble voice, if I 
were General Sherman. He then aimounoed himself as Ciq)tain 
Macbeth, whoso battery had just been captured ; and said tbat 
he remembered me when I used to visit his father's house, in 
Cliarleston. I inquired about his family, and enabled him to 
write a note to his mother, which was sent her afterward from 
Goklsboro'. I have seen that same young gentleman since in 
St. Louis, where he was a clerk in an insurance-office. 

AWiilc the battle of Averysboro' was in progress, and I ^ 
sitting on niv horse, I was approached by a man on foot, witho^^ 
shoes or coat, and his head bandaged by a handkerchief. He ^ 
nouneod himself as the Captain Duncan who had been captu>^ 
by "Wade Hampton in Favetteville, but had escaped; and, ^ 
my inquiring how he happened to be in that plight, he explair::^ 
that when he was a prisoner TVade Hampton's men had 
him ** got out of his coat, hat, and shoes," which they appro 
atod to thonisolves. He said TTade Hampton had seen them 
it, and he had appealed to him personally for protection, as 
otVu'or, but llaniiuon answered him with a curse. I sent Duncj 
to General Kilpatriek, and heard afterward that Kilpatrick 
applied to (f eneral Sloeuni for his prisoner, Colonel Ehett, who "* 
he made mareh on foot the rest of the way to Goldsboro', :^ 
n^tiiHanon, There was a story afloat that Kilpatrick made hL^ 


^get oat" of those fine boots, but restored them because none 
of his own officers had feet delicate enough to wear them. Of 
course, I know nothing of this personally, and have never seen 
Bhett since that night by the coopernshop ; and suppose that 
he is the editor who recently fought a duel in "New Orleans. 

From Averysboro' the left wing turned east, toward Golds- 
boro', the Fourteenth Corps leading. I remained with this 
wing until the night of the 18th, when we were within twenty- 
seven miles of Goldsboro' and five from Bentonsville ; and, 
supposing that all danger was over, I crossed over to join How- 
ard's column, to the right, so as to be nearer to Generals Scho- 
field and Terry, known to be approaching Goldsboro'. I over- 
took General Howard at Falling-Creek Church, and found his 
column well drawn out, by reason of the bad roads. I had 
heard some cannonading over about Slocum's head of column, 
and supposed it to indicate about the same measure of opposi- 
tion by Hardee's troops and Hampton's cavalry before expe- 
rienced; but during the day a messenger overtook me, and 
notified me that near Bentonsville General Slocum had run up 
against Johnston^s whole army. I sent back orders for him to 
fight defensively to save time, and that I would come up with 
]!e§nforoements from the direction of Cox's Bridge, by the road 
which we had reached near Falling-Creek Church. The ceuntry 
was very obscure, and the maps extremely defective. 

By this movement I hoped GeneraJ Slocum would hold 
Johnston's army facing west, while I would come on his rear 
from the east The Fifteenth Corps, less one division (Hazen's), 
still well to the rear, was turned at once toward Bentonsville ; 
Hazen's division was ordered to Slocum's flank, and orders were 
also sent for General Blair, with the Seventeenth Corps, to come 
to the same destination. Meantime the sound of cannon came 
from the direction of Bentonsville. 

The night of the 19th caught us near Falling-Creek Church ; 
bat early the next morning the Fifteenth Corps, General C. R. 
Woods's division leading, closed down on Bentonsville, near 
which it was brought up by encountering a line of fresh parapet, 
eroasing the road and extending north, toward Mill Creek. 


After deploying, 1 ordered General Howard to proceed with 
due caution, using skinnisliers alone, till lie had made jnnctioD 
with General Slocum, on his left. These deployments occupied 
all day, during which two divisions of the Seventeenth Corps 
also got up. At that time General Johnston's army occupied 
the form of a V, the angle reaching the road leading from Aveiys- 
boro' to Goldsboro', and the flanks resting on Mill Creek, his 
lines embracing the village of Bentonsville. 

General Slocum's wing faced one of these lines and General 
Howard's the other; and, in the uncertainty of General Jolm- 
ston's strength, I did not feel disposed to invite a general battle, 
for we had been out from Savannah since the latter part of 
January, and our wagon-trains contained but little food. I had 
also received messages during the day from General Schofidd, 
at Kinston, and General Terry, at Faison's Depot, approaching 
Goldsboro', both expecting to reach it by March 21st. Dniing 
the 20th we simply held our ground and started our trains back 
to Kinston for provisions, which would be needed in the erent 
of being forced to fight a general battle at Bentonsville. The 
next day (21st) it began to rain again, and we remained qoiet 
till about noon, when General Mower, ever rash, broke through 
the rebel line on his extreme left flank, and was pushing straight 
for Bentonsville and the bridge across Mill Creek. I ordered 
liim back to connect with his own corps ; and, lest tlie enemy 
should concentrate on him, ordered the whole rebel line to be 
engaged with a strong skirmish-fire. 

I think I made a mistake there, and should rapidly h^^^ 
followed Mower s lead with the whole of the right wing, wbi<^ 
would have brought on a general battle, and it could not b^"^^ 
resulted otherwise than successfully to us, by reason of ^^ 
vastly superior numbers ; but at the moment, for the reas^^^ 
given, I prefeiTcd to make junction with Generals Terry 
Schofield, before engaging Johnston-s anny, the strength 
which was utterly unknown. The next day he was gone, a- 
had retreated on Smithfield; and, the roads all being clear, 
army moved to Goldsboro'. The heaviest fighting at Bento 
ville was on the fii'st day, viz., the 10th, when Johnston's 




track the head of Slocnm's columns, knocking back Carlin's 
Imsion ; bnt, as soon as General Slocnm had brought ap the 
est of the Fourteenth Corps into line, and afterward the Twen- 
ieth on its left, he received and repulsed all attacks, and held 
18 ground as ordered, to await the coming back of the right 
ing. His loss, as reported, was nine officers and one hundred 
id forty-five men killed, eight hundred and sixteen wounded, 
id two hundred and twenty-six missing. He reported having 
Died of the rebel dead one hundred and sixtynseven, and 
ptured three hundred and thirty-eight prisoners. 

The loss of the right wing was two officers and thirty-five 
en killed, twelve officers and two hundred and eighty-nine 
en wounded, and seventy missing. General Howard reported 
at he had buried one hundred of the rebel dead, and had cap- 
oed twelve hundred and eighty-seven prisoners. 

Our total loss, therefore, at Bentonsville was : 





• • 









Acgragate LoM. 


General Johnston, in his "Narrative" (p. 392), asserts that 
B entire force at Bentonsville, omitting Wheeler's and Butler's 
ralry, only amounted to fourteen thousand one hundred in- 
itry and artillery ; and (p. 393) states his losses as follows : 

















iWd. ,....., TT 





inde discrepancies eidst in these figures : for instance, Gen- 


eral Slocuin acconnts for three hundred and thirtY-eight pm* 
oners captured, and General Howard for twdve hundred and 
eighty-seven, making sixteen hundred and twenty-five in all, 
to Johnston's six hundred and fifty-three — a difference of eight 
hundred and seventy-two. I have always accorded to General 
Johnston due credit for boldness in his attack on our exposed 
flank at Bentonsville, but I think he understates his strengtli,aiid 
doubt whether at the time he had accurate returns from hia 
miscellaneous army, collected from Hoke, Bragg, Hardee, Lee^ 
etc. After the first attack on Carlin's division, I doubt if tk 
fighting was as desperate as described by him, p. 385, ei »l' 
I was close up with the Fifteenth Corps, on the 20th and 2l£t, 
considered the fighting as mere skirmishing, and know that my 
orders were to avoid a general battle, till we could be sure of 
Qoldsboro', and of opening up a new base of supply. TTith 
the knowledge now possessed of his small force, of course I 
committed an error in not overwhelming Johnston's army on 
the 21st of March, 1SG5. But I was content then to let him go, 
and on the 22d of March rode to Cox's Bridge, where I met 
General Terry, witli liis two divisions of the Tenth Corps; and 
the next dav we rode into Goldsboro', where I found General 
Schofield with the Twenty-third Corps, thus eJBFecting a perfect 
junction of all the army at that point, as originally contemplated. 
During the 2;>J and 2 1th the whole army was assembled at 
Goldsboro' ; General Terry's two divisions encamped at Faifion's 
Depot to the south, and General Kilpatrick'S cavalry at Mount 
Olive Station, near him, and there we all rested, while I directed 
mv spooial attention to replenishing the army for the nest and 
last staire of the cainpaiirn. Colonel W. W. AVright had been so 
indotati^raWo, that the Xcwbem Eailroad was done, and a loco- 
motive aiTivod in Goldsboro' on the 25th of March. 

Thus was ooiuludeJ one of the longest and most important 
marohos o\ or n:ado l\v an oriranized anny in a civilized country* 
The distan^v fivni Savannah to GolJsboro' is four hundred and 
twonty-tho ir.ilo:^. and the route traversed embraced five hx^ 
navicaV;o n\o:s, vi.-., the Ed i^tv>, Broad, Catawlia. Pedee, ^^^ 
Oajv War, a: oirV.or ot which a comparatively small force, ^^" 


mdled, Bhonld have made the passage most difficult, if not 
apoBsible. The comitry generally was in a state of nature, 
ith innumerable swamps, with simply mud roads, nearly every 
ile of which had to be corduroyed. In our route we had cap- 
red Columbia, Cheraw, and Fayetteville, important cities and 
ipots of supplies, had compelled the evacuation of Charleston 
ity and Hiirbor, had utterly broken up all the railroads of South 
ftrolina, and had consumed a vast amount of food and forage, 
sential to the enemy for the support of his own armies. We had 
I mid-winter accomplished the whole journey of four hundred 
id twenty-five miles in fifty days, averaging ten miles per day, 
lowing ten lay-days, and had reached Goldsboro' with the 
■my in superb order, and the trains almost as fresh as when 
e had started from Atlanta. 

It was manifest to me that we could resume our march, and 
me within the theatre of General Grant's field of operations 
all April, and that there was no force in existence that could 
lay our progress, unless General Lee should succeed in elud- 
5 G^eral Grant at Petersburg, make jimction with General 
Imston, and thus xmited meet me alone ; and now that we 
d effected a junction with Generals Terry and Schofield, I 
d no fear even of that event. On reaching Goldsboro', I 
omed from General Schofield all the details of his operations 
3nt Wilmington and Newbem ; also of the fight of the Twen- 
third Corps about Kinston, with General Bragg. I also 
ind Lieutenant Dunn, of General Grant's staff, awaiting me, 
tih the general's letter of February Tth, covering instructions 

Generals Schofield and Thomas; and his letter of March 
thy in answer to mine of the 12th, from Fayetteville. 

These are all given here to explain the full reasons for the 
mts of the war then in progress, with two or three letters 
m myself, to fill out the picture. 

Ueadquabtera Armies of the United States, j^ 
Crrx- roiNT, ViBoiKiA, February 7, 1865. ) 

joT'Oeneral "W. T. Sherman, commanding Military Division of the 

: Without much expectation of it rcacblDg jou in time to be 


of an J service, I have mailed to yon copies of instractioDs to Sehofield and 
Thomas. I had infonned Sehofield by telegraph of the departure of 
MahoDe*3 division, soath from the Petersburg front. These troops mardied 
down the Weldon road, and, as they apparently went without baggage, it is 
doubt fol whether they have not returned. I was absent from here wheo 
they kit. Just returned yesterday morning from Cape Fear Biver. I went 
there to determine where Schofield^s corps had better go to operate againet 
Wilmincton and Goldsboro*. The instructions with this will infom yoa of 
the cc>nclusion arrived at. 

Schotield was with me, and the plan of the movement agunst WilmiDg* 
ton fully determined before we started back ; hence the absence of more 
detailed instructions to him. He will land one division at Smithville, vA 
move rapidly up the south side of the river, and secure the Wil]DiDgton& 
Charlotte Bailroad, and with his pontoon train cross over to the idind 
south of the city, if he con. "With the aid of the gunboats, there is do 
doul't but this move will drive the enemy from their position eight niki 
east of the city, either back to their line or away altogether. There wiD be 
a large force on the north bank of Cape Fear Hiver, ready to follow up and 
invest the garrison, if they should go inside. 

The railroads of North Carolina are four feet eight and one-half inches 
gauge. I have sent large parties of railroad-men there to build them ni^ 
and have ordered stock to run them. TTe have abundance of it idle fraoi 
the non-use of the Virginia roads. I have taken every precaution to biw 
supplies roaily for you wherever you may turn up. I did this before when 
yv^u loft Atlanta, and regret that they did not reach you promptly whenyofl 
renchod s:ilt-wr.tor. . . . 

Alexander Stephens, R. M. T. Ilunter, and Judge CampbeU, are nov at 
mj hoadqiiartors, very desirous of going to Washington to see Mr. LincolUi 
informally, on the subject of peace. The peace feeling within the reW 
lines is gaining ground rapidly. This, however, should not relax our ener- 
gies in the least, but should stimulate us to greater activity. 

1 have rocoived your very kind letters, in which you say you wonl'l^^ 
dine, or are opposed to, jiromotion. Xo one would be more pleased it 
your advancement than I, and if you should be placed in my positioDi •^^ 
I put subordinate, it would not change our personal relations in the 1^^' 
I would make the same exertions to support you that you have ever "°^* 
to support mo, and would do all in my power to make our cause win. 

Yours truly, U. S. Gbaxt, Lieutenant- GcTU't^^' 

Headquarters Aiimiks op the Uihted SxArt*'' J^ 
CiTV Point, ViBOiiOA, January 81, 1605. 

Jlnjor-Gcncral G. II. Thomas, commanding Army of the Cumherland, 
General : "With this I send you a letter from General Sherman, 


time of writing it, General Sherman was not informed of the deple- 
i of jonr command bj my orders. It will be impossible at present for 
. to more south as he contemplated, with the force of infantry indicated. 
General Slocnm is advised before this of the changes made, and that for 
winter yon will be on the defensive. I think, however, an expedition 
n East Tennessee, nnder General Stolieman might penetrate South Caro- 
, well down toward Oolumbia, destroying the railroad and military 
mroes of the country, thus visiting a portion of the State which will not 
reached by Sherman^s forces. He might also be able to return to East 
messee by way of Salisbury, North Carolina, thus releasing some of our 
looers of war in rebel hands. 

Of the practicability of doing this. General Stoneman will have to be 
Judge, making up his mind from information obtained while executing 
first part of his instructions. Sherman^s movements will attract the 
ntion of all the force the enemy con collect, thus facilitating the execu- 

rhree thousand cavalry would be a sufficient force to take. This prob- 
oan be raised in the old Department of the Ohio, without taking any 
' under General Wilson. It would require, though, the reorganization 
he two reg^ents of Kentucky Cavalry, which Stoneman had in his 
' Booceasfnl raid into Southwestern Virginia. 

i win be necessary, probably, for you to send, in addition to the force 
in East Tennessee, a small division of infantry, to enable General Gil- 
to hold the upper end of Holston Valley, and the mountain-passes in 
of Stevenson. 

r<m may order such an expedition. To save time, I will send a copy of 
to General Stoneman, so that he can begin his preparations without 
of time, and can commence his correspondence with you as to these 

Ls this expedition goes to destroy and not to fight battles, but to avoid 
I when practicable, particularly against any thing like equal forces, or 
re a great object is to be gained, it should go as light as possible. 
email's experience in raiding will teach him in this matter better than 
in he directed. 

jet there be no delay in the preparations for this expedition, and keep 
idviaed of its progress. Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

U. S. Grant, Lieutenant' General, 

Headquarters Armies ov the UirrrED States, ) 
CiTT PoiMT, YisonnA, January 81, 1865. ) 

fr-General J. M. Sohofield, commanding Army of the Ohio, 

3XSXBAI.: I have requested by telegraph that, for present purposes, 
fth Oarolina be erected into a department, and that you be placed in 


command of it, subject to M^or-General Shennan's orders. Of coarse, jojm 
will reccivo orders from mo direct mitil saoh time as General Sherman geta 
within communicating distance of jon. This obTiates the secessitj o3 
mj publishing the order which I informed yon would meet jon at Fortres.^ 
Monroe. If the order referred to should not be published from the Ac|ji^ 
tant-Gencrars office, you will read these instructions as your authority t^ 
assume command of all the troops in North Carolina, dating all ofiScial coij^ 
munioations, " Headquarters Army of the Ohio." Your headquarters w' 
bo in the field, and with the portion of the army where you feel yours^^ 
most needed. In the first move you will go to Cape Fear Biver. 

Your movements are intended as cooperative with Sherman^s movem^^<2 
through the States of South and North Carolina. The first point to be o/i. 
tained is to secure Wilmington. Groldsboro' will then be your objectiV^ 
point, moving either from Wilmington or Newborn, or both, as yon nu/ 
deem best. Should you not be able to reach Goldsboro', you will sdvuNw 
on the line or lines of railway connecting that place with the sea-coast, u 
near to it as you can, building the road behind yon. The enterprise onder 
you has two objects : the first is, to give General Sherman material aid, if 
needed, in his march north ; the second, to open a base of supplies far him 
on the line of his march. As soon, therefore, as you can determine whieh 
of the two points, Wilmington or Newborn, you can best use for tbrovisg 
supplies from to the interior, you will commence the accumulation of. 
twenty days^ rations and forago for sixty thousand men and twenty thou- 
sand animals. You will get of those as many as you can house and pro- 
tect, to such point in the interior as you may be able to occupy. 

I believe General Innis N. Palmer has received some instructions directly 
from General Sherman, on the subject of securing supplies for his army. 
You can learn what steps he has taken, and be governed in your requisitions 
accordingly. A supply of ordnance-stores will also be necessary. 

Make all your requisitions upon tho chiefs of their respective depart- 
ments, in tho field, with me at City Point. Communicate with mo bye^^^ 
opportunity, and, should you deem it necessary at any time, send a spwi*! 
boat to Fortress Monroe, from which point you can communicate by tele- 

The supplies referred to in these instructions arc exclusive of those re- 
quired by your own command. 

Tho movements of the enemy may justify you, or even make it 7^^^ 
imperative duty, to cut loose from your base and strike for the interior, to 
aid Sherman. In such case you will act on your own judgment^ with^'^^ 
waiting for instructions. You will report, however, what you propo** 
doing. The details for carrying out these instructions are necessarily *^ 
to you. I would urge, however, if I did not know that you are already 
fully alive to the importance of it, prompt action. Sherman may be loo^^ 


for in tLe neighborliood of Goldsboro' any time from the 22d to the 28th of 
Febroory. This limits yoar time very materiallj. 

K rolling-stock is not secured in the capture of Wilmington, it can be 
supplied from Washington. A large force of railroad-men has already been 
■ent to Beaofort, and other mechanics will go to Fort Fisher in a day or 
t^ro. On this point I have informed you by telegraph. 
Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

U. 8. GiiANT, Lieutenant- General. 

Headquarters Armies of the Uxtted States, ) 
Crrx- roiNT, ViEOiNiA, March IG, 18G5. J 

Mtyor-General W. T. Shebmax, commanding Military Division of the 

Gknxral : Your interesting letter of the 12th inst. is Just received. I 
hare never felt any uneasiness for your safety, but I have felt great anxiety 
to know just how you were progressing. I knew, or thought I did, that, 
irith the magnificent army with you, you would come out safely somewhere. 

To secure certiun success, I deemed the capture of Wihnington of the 
gteatert importance. Butler came near losing that prize to us. But Terry 
and Schofield have since retrieved his blunders, and I do not know but the 
first faOnre has been as valuable a success for the country as the capture of 
Fort ilsher. Butler may not see it in that light. 

Ever since you started on the last campaign, and before, I have been 
•ttesmpting to get something done in the West, both to cooperate with you 
and to take advantage of the enemy's weakness there — to accomplish re- 
sults fiiTorable to us. Knowing Thomas to bo slow beyond excuse, I de- 
pleted his army to reinforce Canby, so that he might act from Mobile Bay 
on the interior. With all I have said, ho had not moved at last advices. 
Canby was sending a cavalry force, of about seven thousand, from Yicks- 
borg toward Selma. I ordered Thomas to send Wilson from Eastport 
toward the same point, and to got him off as soon after the 20th of Feb- 
roaxy as possible. He telegraphed me that he would be off by that date. 
He has not yet started, or had not at last advices. I ordered him to send 
Btoneman from East Tennessee into Northwest South Carolina, to be there 
abont the time you would reach Columbia. Ue would cither have drawn 
off the enemy's cavalry from you, or would have succeeded in destroying 
xailroadB, supplies, and other material, which you could not reach. At that 
time the Hidimond papers were full of the accounts of your movements, and 
gare daOy accounts of movements in West North Carolina. I supposed all 
tiie tEme it was Stoneman. You may judge my surprise when I afterward 
haiBed that Stoneman was still in Louisville, Kentucky, and that the troops 
la North Carolina were Kirk's forces I In order that Stoneman might get 
off without delay, I told Thomas that three thousand men would be suffi- 


cient for him to take. In the mean time I had dfa-eoted Sheridan to get his 
oavahy ready, and, as soon as the snow in the mountains melted BofSeientlr, 
to start for Staunton, and go on and destroy the Yirf^nia Oentral Bsilrofld 
and canal. Time advanced, until he set the 28th of February for startingi 
I informed Thomas, and directed him to change the course of StonenuB 
toward Lynchburg, to destroy the road m Virginia up as near to that place 
as possible. Not hearing from Thomas, I telegraphed to him about the 
12th, to know if Stoneman was yet off. He replied not, but that he 
(Thomas) would start that day for EnoxviUe, to get him off as soon as pos- 

Sheridan has made his raid, and with splendid suoc^s, so far as heari 
I am looking for him at <* White House ^' to-day. Since about the 20th of 
last month the Richmond papers have been prohibited from puUiahisg 
accoxmts of army movements. We are left to our own resources, therefore, 
for information. You will see from the papers what Sheridan has dose; 
if you do not, the officer who bears this will tell you all. 

Lee has depicted his army but very little recently, and I learn of Booe 
going south. Some regiments may have been detached, but I tlunk do 
division or brigade. The determination seems to be to hold Richmond n 
long as possible. I have a force sufficient to leave enough to hold oar Bnei 
(all that is necessary of them), and move out with plenty to whip his whole 
army. But the roads are entirely impassable. Until they improve, I shflU 
content myself with watching Lee, and be prepared to pitch into him if he 
attempts to evacuate the place. I may bring Sheridan over — think I wiD- 
and break up the Danville and Southsido Railroads. These ore the bst 
avenues lofl to the enomv. 

Recruits have come in so rapidly at the West that Thomas has now 
about as much force as ho had when he attacked Hood. I have stopped all 
who, under previous orders, would go to him, except those from Illinois. 

Fearing the possibility of the enemy falling back to Lynchburg, an^ 
afterward attempting to go into East Tennessee or Kentucky, I have ordered 
Thomas to move the Fourth Corps to Bull's Gap, and to fortify there, and 
to hold out to the Virginia line, if he can. He has accumulated a ]srp 
amount of supplies in Knoxville, and has been ordered not to destroy wy 
of the railroad west of the Yirginia line. I told him to get ready for • 
campaign toward Lynchburg, if it became necessary. lie never can niak* 
one there or elsewhere ; but the steps taken will prepare for any one else 
to take his troops and come east or go toward Rome, whichever may ^ 
necessary. I do not believe either will. 

"When I hear that you and Schofield are together, with your back npon 
the coast, I shall feel that you are entirely safe against any thing the enemy 
can do. Lee may evacuate Richmond, but he cannot get there with ioT^ 
enough to touch you. His army is now demoralized and deserting ^^ 


faiti both to us and to tliieir Tiomcs. A retrograde movement ivould cost 
him thousands of men, even if we did not follow. 

Fire thousand men, belonging to the corps with jon, are now on their 
waj to join yon. If more re&nforcements are necessary, I will send them. 
ICy notion is, that yon should get Baloigh as soon as possible, and hold the 
railroad from there back. This may take more force than you now have. 

From that point all North Carolina roads can be made useless to the 
Bnemy, without keeping up communications with the rear. 

Hoping to hear soon of your junction with the forces from Wilmington 
and Newbem, I remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

U. S. Graxt, Lieutenant- General. 


Coz'b Bridge, Neubx Bivsr, North CAi.OLUfA, March 22, 1865. ) 

^UutenanU General TJ, S. Grant, Commander-in-Chitf^ City Pointy Virginia. 

GE5ERAL : I wrote yon from Fayetteville, North Carolina, on Tuesday, 
%e 14th instant, that I was all ready to start for Goldsboro\ to whicb point 
t had also ordered General Schofield, fVom Newborn, and General Terry, 
Vom Wilmington. I know that General Jos. Johnston was supreme in 
icmuiiand agdnst me, and that he would have timo to concentrate a respect- 
able army to oppose the last stage of this march. Accordingly, General 
Uoenrn waa ordered to send his main supply-train, under escort of two 
iTiiionB) atraight for Bentonsville, while he, with his other four divisions, 
iMncambered of all unnecessary wagons, should march toward Haleigh, 
J waj of threat, as far as Averysboro'. General Howard, in like manner, 
snt Ilia trains with the Seventeenth Corps, well to the right, and, with the 
mr diviMons of the Fifteenth Corps, took roods which would enable him 
> oome promptly to the exposed left flank. We started on the 15th, but 
jain the rains set in, and the roads, already bad enough, became horrible. 
On Tuesday, the 15th, General Slocnm found Uardee^s army, from 
harleston, which had retreated before us from Cheraw, in position across 
le narrow, swampy neck between Capo Fear and North Rivers, where the 
md branches off to Goldsboro\ There a pretty severe flght occurred, in 
hicli General Slocum^s troops carried handsomely the advanced line, held 
f a South Carolina brigade, commanded by a Colonel Butler. Its com- 
lander. Colonel Bhett, of Fort Sumter notoriety, with one of his staff, had 
le night before been captured, by Kilpatrick^s scouts, from his very skir- 
liah-line. The next morning Hardee was found gone, and was pursued 
irongh and beyond Averysboro'. General Slocum buried one hundred and 
Ight dead rebels, and captured and destroyed three guns. Some eighty 
roumded rebels were left in our hands, and, after dressing their wounds, 
re left them in a house, attended by a Confederate officer and four privates, 
latiiled out of our prisoners and paroled for the purpose. 


We resnmed the march toward 6oldsboro\ I was witli the left wing 
until I supposed all danger had passed ; bnt, when General Slocnm^s head 
of colomn was within foar miles of Bentonsville, after skirmishing as nsnal 
with cavalrj, he became aware that there was infantry in his front He 
deployed a conple of brigades, which, on advancing, sustained a partial re- 
pulse, but soon rallied, when he formed a line of the two leading diviaons 
(Morgan^s and Carlin^s) of Jeff. 0. Davis^s corps. Theenemj attacked these 
with violence, but was repulsed. This was in the forenoon of Sunday, the 
10th. General Slocum brought forward the two divisions of the Twentieth 
Corps, hastily disposed of them for defense, and General Kilpatrick massed 
his cavalry on the left. 

General Jos. Johnston had, the night before, marched his whole army 
vDragg, Cheatham, S. D. Lee, Hardee, and aU the troops he had drawn from 
every quarter), determined, as ho told his men, to crush one of our corps, 
and then defeat us in detail. He attacked General Slocum in position from 
8 p. M. on Ihe 10th till dark; but was everywhere repulsed, and lost heav- 
ily. At the time, I was with the Fifteenth Corps, marching on a road 
more to the right ; but, on hearing of General Slocum^s danger, directed 
that corps toward Cox^s Bridge, in the night brought Blair's corps over, 
and on the 20th marched rapidly on Johnston's flank and rear. We 
struck him about noon, forced him to assume the defen^ve, and to fortify. 
Yesterday we pushed him hard, and came very near crushing him, the 
right division of the Sovcntoonth Corps (Mower's) having broken in to 
within a hundred yards of where Johnston himself was, at the bridge across 
Mill Crook. Last night ho retreated, leaving us in possession of the field, 
dead, and wounded. We have over two thousand prisoners from this affair 
and the one at Avorysboro', and I am satisfied that Johnston's army was so 
roughly handled yesterday that wo could march right on to Raleigh ; but 
wo have now boon out six weeks, living precariously upon the collections 
of our foragers, our men " dirty, ragged, and saucy," and we must rest and 
fix up a little. Our entire losses thus far (killed, wounded, and prisoners) 
will be covered by twenty-five hundred, a great part of which ore, as usual, 
slight wounds. The enemy has lost more than double as many, and we have 
in prisoners alone full two thousand. 

I limited the pursuit, this morning, to Mill Creek, and will forthwith 
march the army to GoM>boro\ there to rest, reclothe, and get some rations. 

Our combinations were such that General Schofield entered Goldsboro' 
fn>m Newborn; Ciouoral Terry got Cox's Bridge, with pontoons laid, and 
a brigade aorv^^s Nouse Kiver intrenched ; and wo whipped Jos. Johnston — 
all on tho saiuo dar. 

Attvf riding over tho field of battle to-day, near Bentonsville, and making 
tho nooos^rv orUvr^k I hdvo ridden down to this place (Cox's Bridge) to see 
General Torrv, and t«.^morrow shall ride into Goldsboro*. 


I propose to oolleot there my army proper ; shall post General Terry 
NBt Faison's Depot, and Greneral Schofield about Kinston, partly to protect 
road, but more to oollect such food and forage as the country affords, 
jl the railroads are repaired leading into Goldsboro'. 
I fear these have not been pushed with the vigor I had expected ; but I 
1 soon hare them both going. I shall proceed at once to organize three 
lies of twenty-five thousand men each, and will try and be all ready to 
roh to Raleigh or Weldon, as we may determine, by or before April 10th. 
I indose you a oopy of my orders of to-day. I would like to be more 
eifiO) but have not the data. We have lost no general officers nor 
r organization. General Slocum took three guns at Averysboro', and 
; three others at the first dash on him at Bentonsville. We have all our 
gons and trains in good order. 

Yours truly, W. T. Shebman, Major- General. 

IIeadquabtsbs Militast Divi8i02r ov tub Missusippi, ) 
IN TU£ Fi£LD, Gk>LDaBOBo*, NoBTU Cabouxa, Mwrck 23, 1865. f 

uUnanUQeneral U. S. Grant, commanding the Armies of the United 
Stateij City Pointy Virginia, 

Gketebal: On reaching Goldsboro' this morning, I found Lieutenant 

m awaiting me with your letter of March 16th and dispatch of the 17th. 

rote yon fully from Cox's Bridge yesterday, and since reaching Golds- 

d' have learned that my letter was sent punctually to Nowbern, whence 

in be dispatched to you. 

[ am very glad to hear that General Sheridan did such good service 

ireen Richmond and Lynchburg, and hope he will keep the ball moving. 

DOW that these raids and dashes disconcert our enemy and discourage 


General Slocum's two corps (Fourteenth and Twentieth) are now com- 

iiu I will dispose of them north of Goldsboro\ between the Weld on 

1 and Little River. General Howard to-day is marching south of the 

lae, and to-morrow will come in and occupy ground north of Goldsboro\ 

ndiiig from the Weldon Railroad to that leading to Kinston. 

[ liave ordered all the provisional divisions, made up of troops belonging 

lie regular corps, to be broken up, and the men to join their propei 

jments and organizations; and have ordered General Schofield to guard 

railroads back to Newbem and Wilmington, and to make up a movable 

mm equal to twenty-five thousand men, with which to take the field. 

army will be the centre, as on the Atlanta campaign. I do not think I 
it maj more troops (other than absentees and recruits) to fill up the pres- 

regiments, and I can make up an army of eighty thousand men by 
rfl lOih. I will post General Kilpatrick at Mount Olive Station on tho 
imiiigtOD road, and then allow tho army some rest 


We have sent all onr empty wagons, under escort, with the prqterriifr 
officers, to bring np from Kinston clothing and prorinons. As long ■ 
we move we can gather food and forage ; bnt, the moment we stop, trwAll 

I feci sadly disappointed that onr railroads are not done. I do not fib 
to say there has been any neglect until I make inquiries; but it doeiieanto 
me the repairs should have been made ere this, and the road propd|f 
stocked. I can only hoar of one locomotive (besides the four old onei)<i 
the Newbcm road, and two damaged locomotives (found byGenenlTcn}) 
on the 'Wilmington road. I left Generals Easton and Beckwith par^oadj 
to make arrangements in anticipation of my arrival, and have heard froa 
neither, though I suppose them both to be at Morehead City. 

At all events, we have now made a junction of all the armies, andiffi 
can maintain them, wUl, in a short time, be in a position to march agaiMt 
Kaleigh, Gaston, Weldon, or even Richmond, as you may determine. 

If I get the troops all well placed, and the supplies working well, Inif 
run up to see you for a day or two before diving again into the bowcb^f 
the country. 

I will make, in a very short time, accurate reports of our operatiouli 
the i)ast two months. Yours truly, 

W. T. Shebman, Major- General commaniiHf 


IX Tiui Field, Goldsboro', Nobtu Cabolixa, JUarch U, ISiS. ) 

LU'utenant'Gcneral JJ, 8, GsxyT, City Pointy Yirginia, 

General : I have kept Lieutenant Dunn over to-day that I might report 
further. All the army is now in, save the cavalry (which I have poitoi 
at M(nmt Olive Station, south of the Neuse) and General Terry's commiDi 
(which to-morrow will move from Cox's Ferry to Faison's Depot, also <* 
tlie Wilmington road). I send you a copy of my orders of this moniingi 
the operation of which will, I think, soon complete our roads. The tele- 
graph is now done to Morehead City, and by it I learn that stores have be* 
Sent to Kinston in boats, and that our wagons are loading with ntioB* 
and clothing. By using the Neuso as high up as Kinston, hauling ^ 
there twenty-six miles, and by equipping the two roads to Morehead City 
and "Wilmington, I feel certain we can not only feed and equip tlie anny,!'*'* 
in a short time fill our wagons for another start I feel certain, from ^ 
character of the fighting, that we have got Johnston's army afraid of ^ 
He himself acts with timidity and caution. His cavalry alone manife** 
spirit, but limits its operations to our stragglers and foraging-parties. M 
marching columns of infantry do not pay the cavalry any attention, ^^ 
walk right through it 

I think I see pretty clearly how, in one more move, wo can checko*^ 


Lm, forcing him to unite Johnston with him in the defense of Bichmond, or 
to abflndoQ the eatue, I feel certain, if he leaves Eichmond, Yirginia leaves 
the Oonfederacy. I will stndj my maps a little more hefore giving my posi- 
tive Tiews. I want all possible information of the Hoanoke as to naviga- 
bilitj, how far np, and with what draught. 

We find the comitrj sandj, dry, with good roads, and more com and 
Ibrage than I had expected. The families remain, but I will gradually push 
them an out to Baleigh or Wilmington. We will need every house in the 
town. Lieutenant Dunn can tell you of many things of which I need not 
Write. Yours truly, W. T. Skebman, Major- General, 

Headquabtxbb Miutart Division or the Missisbippi, \ 
DT TUB Field, Goldsbobo', Nobtu CABOLOfA, Jj^ril 5, lb65. ) 

ifi^ar' General Geobge H. TnoMAS, commanding Department of the Cum- 

Dx4B Gknebal : I can hardly help smiling when I contemplate my com- 
Kmid — ^it is decidedly mixed. I believe, but am not certain, that you are 
IK mj jurisdiction, but I certainly cannot help you in the way of orders or 
Dan ; nor do I think you need either. General Crufl has just arrived with 
d« prorisional division, which wiU at once be broken up and the men sent 

their proper reg^ents, as that of Meagher was on my arrival here. 

Yoa may have some feeling about my asking that General Slocum should 
imTO oonunand of the two corps that properly belong to you, viz., the Four- 
Benth and Twentieth, but you can recall tiiat he was but a corps com- 
iBnder, and could not legally make orders of discharge, transfer, etc., 
rhiehwaa imperatively necessary. I therefore asked that General Slocum 
horold be assigned to command " an army in the field," called the Army 
f Georgia, composed of the Fourteenth and Twentieth Corps. The order 

1 not yet made by the President, though I have recognized it because both 
taneral Grant and the President have sanctioned it, and promised to have 
lie order made. 

Hy army is now here, pretty well clad and provided, divided into three 
•rtS| of two corps each — ^much as our old Atlanta army was. 

I expect to move on in a few days, and propose (if Lee remains in Bich- 
lond) to pass the Boanoke, and open communication with the Chowan 
nd Norfolk. This will bring me in direct communication with General 

This is an admirable point — country open, and the two railroads in good 
ffder back to Wilmington and Beaufort. We have already brought up 
tores enough to fill our wagons, and only await some few articles, and the 
aniTil of some men who are marching up from the coast, to be off. 

General Grant explained to me his orders to you, which, of course, are 
dl right. Yon can make reports direct to Washington or to General Grant, 


but keep me advised occasionallj of the general state of afiGun, that I m^ 
know what is happening. I must give mj undivided attention to mitten 
here. You will hear from a thousand sonrces pretty fair accounts of oar 
next march. Yours truly, W. T. Suxbman, Ifajor-OnunL 

[LzTTXs noaf Admibal DAHLOuai.] 

8omi-ATiJL2ino S<iirADR02r| I 

Flao-Ship PmrjkPKLFHiiL, Ohablbstqv, AprU 20, 1S65. ) 

Major- General TV^. T. SnEEMAN, commanding Armu$ of th^ TenMm»y 
Geargia, and Missimppu 

Mt deab Genssal : I was much gratified by a siglit of your hand- 
writing, which has just reached me from Goldsboro' ; it was very saggestiTa 
of a past to mo, when these regions were the scene of your operatioiu. 

As you progressed through South Carolina, there was no manlfestitiM 
of weakness or of an intention to abandon Charleston, until within t fov 
hours of the fact. On the 11th of February I was at Stono^ and a spirit^ 
demonstration was made by General Schimmelpfennig and the TeBselfl. Be 
drove the rebels from their rifle-pits in front of the lines, extending fros 
Fort Pringle, and pushed them vigorously. The next day I was at BoITk 
Bay, with a dozen steamers, among them the finest of the squadron. Gtt- 
eral Potter had twelve to fifteen hundred men, the object being to cany out 
your views. We made as much fuss as possible, and with better sooeca 
than I anticipated, for it seems that the rebs conceived Stono to be a feiot^ 
and the real object at Bull's Bay, supposing, from the number of stcamen 
and boats, that wo had several thousand men. Now came an aide from 
General Gillmore, at Port Royal, with your cipher-dispatch from Midviyj 
so I steamed down to Port Royal to seo him. Next day was spent in vain 
cfTorts to decipher — finally it was accomplished. You thought that tb« 
state of tlio roads might force you to turn upon Charleston ; so I went there 
on the 15th, but there was no sign yet of flinching. Then I went to Boll* 
Bay next day (ICth), and found that the troops were not yet ashore, o^n? 
to the difliculties of shoal water. One of the gunboats had contrived to ff>^ 
up to within shelling range, and both soldiers and sailors were workinS 
hard. On the evening of the 16th I steamed down to Stono to see ho^ 
matters wero going there. Passing Charleston, I noticed two large ^^ 
well inside — probably preparing to leave. On the 17th, in Stono, rumors 
wero flying about loose of evacuation. In course of the morning, Gene^^ 
Schimmelpfennig telegraphed mo, from Morris Island, that there were aymp" 
toms of leaving; that ho would again make a push at Stono, and asked fef 
monitors. General Schimmelpfennig came down in the afternoon, and we db** 
in tho Folly Branch, near Secessionville. IIo was sure that the rebs would 
be off that night, so ho was to assault them in front, while a monitor and g^ 


boiti stong their flanks both sides. I also sent an aide to order my battery 
of fire deyen-inch gons, at Oamming's Point, to fire steadily all night on 
kDhran's Island, and two monitors to close np to the island for the same 
>lQect Next morning (18th) the rascals were found to be off, and we broke 
Q from all directions, by land and water. The main bodies had left at eight 
ir nine in the evening, leaving detachments to keep up a fire from the bat- 
Bries. I steamed round quickly, and soon got into the city, threading the 
treets with a large group of naval captiuns who had joined me. All was 
ilent as the grave. No one to be seen but a few firemen. 

Kg one can question the excellence of your judgment in taking the track 
<>u did, and I never had any misgivings, but it was natural to desire to go 
ito the place with a strong hand, for, if any one spot in the land was fore- 
ikost in the trouble, it was Charleston. 

Your campaign was the final blow, grand in conception, complete in 
Xecation; and now it is yours to secure the last army which rebeldom 
•oiMSsesi I hear of your being in motion by the 9th, and hope that the 
Bsnlt may be all that yon wish. 

Tidings of the murder of the President have just come, and shocked 
retj mind. Can it be that such a resort finds root in any stratum of 
merican opinion ? Evidently it has not been the act of one man, nor of a 
adman. Who have prompted him ? 

I am grateful for your remembrance of my boy ; the thought of him is 
ler nearest to my heart. Generous, brave, and noble, as I ever knew him 
be, that he should close his young life so early, even under the accepted 
nditiona of a soldier^s life, as a son of the Union, would have been grief 
flSdent for me to bear ; but that his precious remains should have been so 
Mted by the brutes into whose hands they fell, adds even to the bitter- 
OS of death. I am now awaiting the hour when I can pay my last duties 
hia memory. 

With my best and sincere wishes, my dear general, for your success and 
ippinesB^ I am, most truly, your friend, 

J. A. Dahlgben. 

[General Order No. 50.] 


WAflmxQTON, March 27, 18G5. ) 

Ordered — 1. That at the hour of noon, on the 14th day of April, 1865, 
revet Hi^or-General Anderson will raise and plant upon the ruins of Fort 
imter, in Charleston Harbor, the same United States flag which floated 
rer the battlements of that fort during the rebel assault, and which was 
wered and saluted by him and the small force of his command when the 
orka were evacuated on the 14th day of April, 18G1. 

2« That the flag, when raised, be saluted by one hundred guns from 



Fort Snmtor, and bj a national salute from eveiy fort and rebel bal 
that fired npon Fort Samter. 

8. That suitable ceremonies be bad npon the ocoanon, under the direc^a»^<so- 
tion of M^jor-General William T. Sherman, whose military operations oooo^iacaD' 
pelled the rebels to evacuate Charleston, or, in his absence, under tLcfl^ 
charge of Mi\}or-Genoral Q. A. Gillmore, commanding the de] 
Among the ceremonies will be the delivery of a public addrccs bj 
Rev, Henry Ward Beechcr. 

4. That the naval forces at Charleston, and their commander on 
station, bo invited to participate in the ceremonies of the occasion. 

By order of the President of the United States, 

Edwin M. Stantozt, Secretary ^ War. 

[G«nenl Order No. 41.] 

IIsADQUAsnEBS DxPAsmsiiT or Tm Sons, I 
Hilton Hxad, South Cabouxa, AjS)Hl 10, 1865. ) 

Friday next, the 14th inst, will be the fourth anniversary of the 
ture of Fort Sumter by the rebels. A befitting celebration on tiiat 
in honor of its reoccupation by the national forces, has been ordered by 
President, in pursuance of which Brevet Mi^or-€kneral Robert 
United States Army, will restore to its original place on the fort the id< 
tical fiag which, after an honorable and gallant defense, he was com] 
to lower to the insurgents in South Carolina, in April, 1861. 

The ceremonies for the occasion will commence with prayer, at 
minutes past eleven o*clock a. m. 

At noon precisely, the flag will be raised and saluted with one hundred^^ 
guns from Fort Sumter, and with a national salute from Fort Moultrie and 
Battery Beo on Sullivan^s Island, Fort Putnam on Morris Island, and Fort 
Johnson on James's Island ; it being eminently appropriate that the places 
which were so conspicuous in the inauguration of the rebellion should take 
a part not less prominent in this national rejoicing over the restoration of 
the national authority. 

After the salutes, the Rev. Uenry Ward Beechcr will deliver an address. 

The ceremonies will close with prayer and a benediction. 

Colonel Stewart L. Woodford, chief of staff, under such verbal instruc- 
tions as he may receive, is hereby charged with the details of the celebra- 
tion, comprising all the arrangements that it may be necessary to make for 
the accommodation of the orator of the day, and the comfort and safety of 
the invited guests from the army and navy, and from civil life. 

By command of Mt^'or-General Q. A. Gillmore, 

W. L. M. BuBOEB, AuUtant Adjutant- OeneraL 


C^ ^f MajcT Aitdebbon's I>i^atch, announcing the Surrender of Fort 

Sumter^ April 1^ 1861. 

Stsaxbhip Baltic, oft Saitdt Hook, ) 
AprU 18, 1861, 10.80 a. h.— Via Nbw York, f 

honorable S. Gamsbozt, Secretary of War, Washington : 

Haying defended Fort Sumter for thirtj-fonr hours, until the quarters 

ircre entirely burned, the main gates destroyed by fire, the gorge-walls 

fleiioody figured, the magazine surrounded by flames, and its door closed 

from the effect of heat, four barrels and three cartridges of powder only 

l>eing ayailable, and no provisions remaining but pork, I accepted terms 

of evacuation offered by General Beauregard, being the same offered by 

him on the 11th inst., prior to the commencement of hostilities, and 

'narcbed out of the fort, Sunday afternoon, the 14th inst., with colors flying 

And drums beating, bringing away company and private property, and 

■•luting my flag with fifty guns. 

BoBSBT AiTDEBSOsr, Major First Artillery, commanding, 






As before described, the armies oommanded ieBpeoli?df 1)J 
G^erals J. M. Schofidd, A. K. Teny, and myaeli^ eSBetoi a 
junction in and about Goldsboro', North Oandina, during A0 
22d and 23d of March, 1865, but it required a few days for dl 
the troops and trains of wagons to reach their respectiye caaqt 
In person I reached Gk>ldsboro' on the 28d, and met QaoaA 
Schofield, who described f nil j his operations in North OsioBd* 
np to that date ; and I also found Lieutenant Dunn, aide^ 
camp to General Grant, with a letter from him of March 16t3^ 
giving a general description of the state of facts about GP^ 
Point. The next day I received another letter, more full, dat^ 
the 22d, which I give herewith. 

Nevertheless, I deemed it of great importance that I shoal - 
have a personal interview with the general, and detennined t^ 
go in person to City Point as soon as the repairs of the railroad^ 
then in progress under the personal direction of Colonel W. WT 
Wright, would permit : 


Cnr PoQiT, ViBOorui, March S8, 186fi. | 

Majin'- General W. T. Sherman, commanding Military Divinan qftksMih 

Genebal: Although the Richmond papers do not oommnnicata theftot^ 
yet I saw enough in them to satisfy me that 70a occupied Goldsboro' on tiMfi 
19th inst. I oongratnlate jon and the army on what maj be regarded am 

866.] END OF I HE WAR. 323 

he saocesBfol tennination of the third campaign since leaving the Tennessee 
iiver, less than one year ago. 

Since Sheridan^s very saccessfol raid north of the James, the enemy are 
eft dependent on the Sonthside and Danville roads for all their supplies, 
^eae I hope to cat next week. Sheridan is at " White Honse/' shoeing up 
•Hd resting his cavalry. I expect him to finish hy Friday night and to start 
^e following morning, via Long Bridge, Newmarket, Bermuda Hundred, 
•Hd the extreme left of the army around Petershnrg. He will make no 
'alt with the armies operating here, but will be joined by a division of cav- 
^ij, five thousand five hundred strong, from the Army of the Potomac, and 
^ill proceed directly to the Southside and Danville roads. His instructions 
i* in be to strike the Southside road as near Petersburg as he can, and de- 
broy it so that it cannot be repaired for three or four days, and push on to 
be Danville road, as near to the Appomattox as he can get. Then I want 
fan to destroy the road toward Burkesville as far as he can ; then push on 
» the Southside road, west of Burkesville, and destroy it effectually. From 
lat point I shall probably leave it to his discretion cither to return to this 
mj, crossing the Danville road south of Burkesville, or go and join you, 
mang between Danville and Greensboro\ When this movement com- 
ances I shall move out by my left, with all the force I can, holding present 
trenched lines. I shall start with no distinct view, farther than holding 
>e*8 forces from foUowing Sheridan. But I shall be along myself, and will 
ka adrantage of any thing that turns up. If Lee detaches, I will attack ; 
if he comes out of his lines I will endeavor to repulse him, and follow it 
I to the best advantage. 

It is most difficult to understand what the rebels intend to do ; so far 
it few troops have been detached from Lee^s army. Much machinery has 
en removed, and material has been sent to Lynchburg, showing a dispo- 
ion to go there. Points, too, have been fortified on the Danville road. 

Lice's army is much demoralized, and great numbers are deserting. 
■obably, from returned prisoners, and such conscripts as can be picked up, 
9 nnmbers may be kept up. I estimate his force now at about sixty -five 
onsand men. 

"Wilson started on Monday, with twelve thousand cavalry, from East- 
irt. Stoneman started on the same day, from East Tennessee, toward 
mohbnrg. Thomas is moving the Fourth Oorps to Builds Gap. Canby is 
oving with a formidable force on Mobile and the interior of Alabama. 

I ordered Gillmore, as soon as the fall of Charleston was known, to hold 
L important posts on the sea-coast, and to send to Wilmington all surplus 
rces. Thomas was also directed to forward to Newbem all troops be- 
nging to the corps with you. I understand this will give you about five 
loaaand men, besides those brought east by Meagher. 

I have been telegraphing General Meigs to hasten up locomotives and 

821 END OF THE WAE. [leSS. 

can for joo. General McCaUmn, he infbnna me^ Is at tomlln g to it I te 
thej are not going forward as fast as I would Hka. 

Let me Imow if jou want more troops, or anj tUng elae. 
Very respectftill j, your obedient semnt^ 

The railroad was repaired to Gbldaboro^ by tiie eveiuiig 
March 25th, when, leaving G^encral Schofield in duef . 
with a conple of staff-offioers I started for Gitj Pdnt^ Yii 
on a locomotive, in company with Colonel Wi^;fat^ ihe 
ing engineer. We reached fTewbem that evenings which wr 
passed in the company of Gteneral Palmer and hia mooomfStiM^mmi 
lady, and early the next morning we continued oa to 
City, where Gteneral Easton had provided for na the 
captured steamer Bnssia, Captain BmitL We pot to 
once and steamed up the coast, reaching Fortreafi Mcmioe mi 
morning of the 27th, where I landed and telegraphed to 
brother, Senator Sherman, at Washington, inviting him to 
down and return with me to Ooldsboro^. We prooeeded on 
James Kiver to City Point, which we reached the same 
noon. I found General Grant, with his family and staf^ 
pying a pretty group of huts on the bank of James Hiver, 
looking the harbor, which was full of vessels of all dasseSi bo''^ 
war and merchant, with wharves and warehouses on an 
sive scale. The general received me most heartily, and 
talked over matters very fully. After I had been with 
an hour or so, he remarked that the President, Mr. linoofa^^ 
was then on board the steamer Kiver Queen, lying at tisi^^ 
wharf, and he proposed that we should call and see him. W^"^ ^ 
walked down to the wharf, went on board, and found Mr. 
coin alone, in the after-cabin. He remembered me 
and at once engaged in a most interesting conversation. He 
full of curiosity about the many incidents of our great 
which had reached him officially and through the ne^ 
and seemed to enjoy very much the more ludicrous parts — aboH^ 
the " bummers," and their devices to collect food and f onge wiiefl 
the outside world supposed us to be starving; but at the aamf 


1865.] END OF THE WAR. 325 

time he expressed a good deal of anxiety lest some accident 
might happen to the army in North Carolina during my ab- 
sence. I explained to him that that army was snug and com- 
fortable, in good camps, at Goldsboro' ; that it would require 
some days to collect forage and food for another march ; and 
that General Schofield was fully competent to command it in 
xny absence. Having made a good, long, social visit, we took 
OUT leave and returned to General Grant's quarters, where Mrs. 
Orant had provided tea. While at the table, Mrs. Grant in- 
quired if we had seen Mrs. Lincoln. " No," said the general, 
« I did not ask for her ; '' and I added that I did not even know 
that she was on board. Mrs. Grant then exclaimed, " Well, you 
are a pretty pair I " and added that our neglect was unpardon- 
sble ; when the general said we would call again the next day, 
and make amends for the unintended slight. 

Early the next day, March 2Sth, all the principal ofiicers of 
the anny and navy called to see me, Generals Meade, Ord, In- 
gallfii etc., and Admiral Porter. At this time the Biver Queen 
was at anchor out in the river, abreast of the wharf, and we 
again started to visit Mr. and Mrs, Lincoln. Admiral Porter 
accompanied us. We took a small tug at the wharf, which 
oonveyed us on board, where we were again received most 
courteously by the President, who conducted us to the after- 
cabin. After the general compliments. General Grant inquired 
after Mrs. Lincoln, when the President went to her state-room, 
returned, and begged us to excuse her, as she was not well. 
We then again entered upon a general conversation, during 
which General Grant explained to the President that at that 
very instant of time General Sheridan was crossing James Eiver 
from the north, by a pontoon-bridge below City Point ; that he had 
a large, well-appointed force of cavalry, with which he proposed 
to strike the Southside and Danville Raib-oads, by which alone 
General Lee, in Richmond, supplied his army ; and that, in his 
judgment, matters were drawing to a crisis, his only apprehension 
being that General Lee would not wait long enough. I also 
explained that my army at Goldsboro' was strong enough to 
fight Lee's army and Johnston's combined, provided that Gen- 


«alGmHteiNddeoB»ipwiftiaadijarflo; tint if Lee iroald 
ohI^ icnMBD ift Bidmond eumthft £ottiDJ|^it^ I codld meitli up 
to Bitoe f i lh^ wlm Lee vnoli lisn to efarre ineide of hift 
finei^ or oooie out from liie iiiU wH'liinfnln end fi^t ns on equal 

Both Cknend Grant end mjadif enqppoeed that one or the 
other of ns woidd hsTS to fi|^ one more bloody hsttle^ end 
thst it would be the laaL Mr. Tinoniln iriHsimed , more than 
onoe^ thst there hsd been blood enong^ afaed, and asked ns if 
another battle ooold not be aToided* I lemember well to have 
asid thst we oonld not oontrol thst event ; that this nn e owsT ily 
rested with onr enemy; and I inferred that both Jeff. Davis snd 
General Lee wonld be forced to fi^t <Hie more despersto snd 
bloody battle. I rather supposed it would fall on mOi somewhere 
near Baleigh; and G^eial Grant added that» if Lee would 
only wait a few more days, he would have hia army so dis- 
posed that if the enemy should abandon Bichmond, and attempt 
to make junction with General Jos. Johnston in Korth Carolina, 
he (General Grant) would be on his heels. Mr. Lincoln more 
than once expressed uneasiness that I was not with my army at 
Gh>ld8boio'| when I again assured him that General Schofield was 
fully competent to command in my absence ; that I was going 
to start back that very day, and that Admiral Porter had kindly 
provided for me the steamer Bat, which he said was much 
swifter than my own vessel, the Kussia. During this interview 
I inquired of the President if he was all ready for the end of 
the war. What was to be done with the rebel armies when de- 
feated i And what should be done with the political leaders, 
»uch as Jeff. Davis, etc t Should we allow them to escape, etc ? 
Jle eaid ho was all ready ; all he wanted of us was to defeat 
tho opposing anuies« and to get the men composing the Con- 
f^xlorato armies back to tlieir homes, at work on their &rms 
and in tlioir diojvs^ As to Jeff. Davis* he was hardly at liberty 
tv^ <^jH>ak hU nuiul f uUy« but intimated that he ought to dear 
out* *^ v^'ajH? the vvuutry,^* only it would not do for him to say 
9^^ o^vnl\\ As u^uaL he iUustiated his meaning by a story: 
^^ A UKiu once had takt^n the tv^talsihstinence pledge. When visit 

... ^r* 

18«6.] END OP THE WAR. 827 

ing a friend, he was invited to take a drink, but declined, on the 
score of his pledge; when his friend suggested lemonade, 
which was accepted. In preparing the lemonade, the friend 
pointed to the brandy-bottle, and said the lemonade would be 
more palatable if he were to pour in a little brandy ; when his 
guest said, if he could do so ^ unbeknown ' to him, he would 
not object.'' From which illustration I inferred that Mr. Lin- 
coln wanted Davis to escape, ^^ unbeknown " to him. 

I made no notes of this conversation at the time, but Admi- 
ral Porter, who was present, did, and in 1866 he furnished me 
an account thereof, which I insert below, but the admiral de- 
scribes the first visit, of the 27th, whereas my memory puts Ad- 
miral Porter's presence on the following day. Still he may be 
right, and he may have been with us the day before, as I write this 
chiefly from memory. There were two distinct interviews ; the 
first was late in the afternoon of March 27th, and the other about 
noon of the 28th, both in the after-cabin of the steamer Eiver 
Qneen ; on both occasions Mr. Lincoln was full and frank in 
his oonversation, assuring me that in his mind he was all ready 
for the dvil reorganization of a£Eairs at the South as soon as the 
war was over ; and he distinctly authorized me to assure Gov- 
ernor Yance and the people of Korth Carolina that, as soon as the 
rebel armies laid down their arms, and resumed their civil pur- 
snits, they would at once be guaranteed all their rights as citizens 
of a common country ; and that to avoid anarchy the State gov- 
ernments then in existence, with their civil functionaries, would 
be recognized by him as the government de facto till Congress 
could provide others. 

I know, when I left him, that I was more than ever im- 
pressed by his kindly nature, his deep and earnest sympathy 
with the afflictions of the whole people, resulting from the war, 
and by the march of hostile armies through the South ; and that 
his earnest desire seemed to be to end the war speedily, with- 
out more bloodshed or devastation, and to restore all the men 
of both sections to their homes. In the language of his second 
inaugural address, he seemed to have ^^ charity for all, malice 
toward none," and, above all, an absolute faith in the courage, 


838 £Kn> OF THE WAB. {VMS. ^ 

numlineas, and integrity of ihe annies in the field. "WlienatxeBt 
or listening, his legs and anna seemed to hang almoet lifeleai^ 
and his tBce was care-worn and haggard; bnt^ the moment he 
began to talk, his &oe lightened upj hia tall fcnmy as it wen^ 
unfolded, and he was the very impenEKnation of goodrliimMMr 
and fellowship. The last words I recall as addreaaed to me 
were that he wonld feel better when I waa back at Goldsboio^. 
We parted at the gangway of the Biver Qneen, aboaft noon of 
March 28th, and I never saw him again* Of all the mea lereoc 
met, he seemed to possess more of the dements of greatPOBBi 
combined with goodness, than any other. 



Tbe day of General Sherman's arrival at CSijPoint (I thinktiia flHk. 
March, 1865), I aocompanied him and General Grant en board tfaa 
dent's flag-ahip, the Qaeen, where the Freddent reodred as In the 
saloon, no one bnt onrsdyes being present. 

The President was in an exceedinc^ pleasant mood, and ^t^^rttfl ^ 
meet General Sherman, whom he oordiallj greeted. 

It seems that this was the first tune he had met Sherman, to 
him, since the beginning of the war, and did not remember when he 
seen him before, nntil the general reminded him of the dronmstaneea 
their first meeting. 

This was rather singular on the part of Mr. Lincoln, who waa, I 
remarkable for remembering people, having that kingly qnafitj in 
nent degree. Indeed, sach was the power of his memory, that he 
never to forget the most minnte circmnstance. 

The conversation soon turned on the events of Sherman's eami 
through the South, with every movement of which the 

lie laughed over some of the stories Sherman told of his '^bomnMn,' 
and told others in return, which illustrated in a striking manner the 
he wanted to convey. For example, he wonld often express his wishes 
telling an apt story, which was quite a habit with him, and one that I 
he adopted to prevent his committing himself seriously. 

The interview between the two generals and the President lasted 
an hour and a half, and, as it was a remarkable one, I jotted down whai 
remembered of the conversation, as I have made a practice of doing 
the rebellion, when any thing interesting occurred. 


I don't regret haying done so, as circnmstanoes afterward occnrred 
(Stanton's ill-oondnot toward Sherman) which tended to cast odium on 
General Sherman for allowing such liheral terms to Jos. Johnston. 

Conld the conversation that occurred on board the Queen, between 
the President and General Sherman, have been known, Sherman would 
not,' and could not, have been censured. Mr. Lincohi, had ho lived, would 
haye acquitted the general of any blame, for he was only carrying out the 
P^nesident's wishes. 

Mj opinion is, that Mr. Lincoln came down to City Point with the most 
liberal views toward the rebels. lie felt confident that we would be suc- 
cessfti], and was willing that the enemy should capitulate on the most favor- 
able terms. 

I don*t know what the President would have done had he been left to 
himself^ and had our army been unsuccessful, but he was then wrought up 
to a high state of excitement. He wanted peace on almost any terms, and 
there is no knowing what proposals he might have been willing to listen to. 
His heart was tenderness throughout, and, as long as the rebels liud down 
their arms, he did not care how it was done. I do not know how far he 
was influenced by General Grant, but I presume, from their long conferences, 
that thej must have understood each other perfectly, and that the terms 
given to Lee after his surrender were authorized by Mr. Lincoln. I know 
that the latter was delighted when he heard that they had been given, and 
ezdahned, a dozen times, " Good I " "All right I " '' Exactly the thing I " 
and other similar expressions. Indeed, the President more than once told 
me what he supposed the terms would be : if Lee and Johnston surrendered, 
he conndered the war ended, and that all the other rebel forces would lay 
down their arms at once. 

In this he proved to be right. Grant and Sherman were both of the 
same opinion, and so was every one else who know any thing about the 

What signified the terms to them, so long as we obtained the actual sur- 
render of people who only wanted a good opportunity to give up gracefully ? 
The rebels had fought " to the last ditch," and all that they had left them 
waa the hope of being handed down in history as having received honorable 

After hearing General Sherman's ao(iount of his own position, and that 
of Johnston, at that time, the President expressed fears that the rebel gen- 
eral would escape south again by the railroads, and that General Sherman 
would have to chase him anew, over the same ground ; but the general pro- 
noonced this to be impracticable. He remarked : " I have him where ho 
cannot move without breaking up his army, which, once disbanded, can 
never again be got together ; and I have destroyed the Southern railroads, 
so that they cannot be used again for a long time." General Grant re- 

830 END OF THE WAE. [1865. 

marked, " What is to prevent their laying the rails again!'' <* Why,** aaid 
General Sherman, ** my * bummers ' don't do things by balTes. Every rail, 
after having been placed over a hot fire, has been twisted as crooked as a 
ramVhom, and they never can be nsed again." 

This was the only remark made by General Grant during the interview, 
as he sat smoking a short distance firom the Prendent, intent^ no doabt| <m 
his own plans, which were being brought to a successftil twrmination. 

The conversation between the President and General Sherman, about 
the terms of surrender to be allowed Jos. Johnston, continued. Sherman 
energetically insisted that he could command his own t^rma, and that 
Johnston would have to yield to his demands ; but the President was very 
decided about the matter, and insisted that the surrender of Johnston^s army 
must be obtained on any terms. 

General Grant was evidently of the same way of thinking, for, although 
he did not join in the conversation to any extent, yet he made no olJMtuma, 
and I presume had made up his mind to allow the best terms himselll 

He was also anxious that Johnston should not be driven into Bichmond, 
to reinforce the rebels there, who, from behind their strong intrenohments, 
would have given us incalculable trouble. 

Sherman, as a subordinate officer, yielded his iHlews to those of the 
President, and the terms of capitulation between himself and Johnston 
were exactly in accordance with Mr. Lincoln's wishes. He could not have 
done any thing which would have pleased the President better. 

Mr. Lincoln did, in fact, arrange the (so considered) liberal terms offered 
General Jos. Johnston, and, whatever may have been General Sherman's 
private views, I feel sure that he yielded to the wishes of the President in 
every respect. It was Mr. Lincoln's policy that was carried out, and, had 
he lived long enongh, he would have been bat too glad to have acknowl- 
edged it. Had Mr. Lincoln lived, Secretary Stanton would have issued no 
false telegraphic dispatches, in the hope of killing off another general in 
the regular army, one who by his success had placed himself in the way of 
his own succession. 

The disbanding of Jos. Johnston's army was so complete, that the pens 
and ink used in the discussion of the matter were all wasted. 

It was asserted, by the rabid ones, that Greneral Sherman had given up 
all that we had been fighting for, had conceded every thing to Jos. Johnston, 
and had, as the boys say, " knocked the fat into the fire ; " but sober reflec- 
tion soon overruled these harsh expressions, and, with those who knew 
General Sherman, and appreciated him, he was still the great soldier, pa- 
triot, and gentleman. In future times this matter will be looked at more 
calmly and dispassionately. The bitter animosities that have been engen- 
dered daring tlio rebellion will have died out for want of food on which 
to live, and the very coarse Grant, Sherman, and others pursued, in grant 

1865.] END OF THE WAR. 331 

ing liberal tarma to the defeated rebels, will be applanded. The fact is, 
tfaej met an old beggar in the road, whose cratches had broken from un- 
der him : thej let him haye only the broken crutches to get home with I 

I sent General Sherman back to Newbem, North Oarolina, in the 
steamer Bat. 

While he was absent from his command he was losing no time, for he 
was getting his army ftillj equipped with stores and clothing ; and, when 
he returned, he had a rested and regenerated army, ready to swallow up 
Jot. Johnston and all his ragamuflins. 

Johnston was cornered, could not move without leaving everj thing 
behind him, and could not go to Richmond without bringing on a famine 
in that destitute citv. 

I was with Mr. Lincoln all the time he was at City Point, and until he 
left for Washington. lie was more than delighted with the surrender of 
Lee^ and with the terms Grant gave the rebel general ; and would have 
giren Jos. Johnston twice as much, had the latter asked for it, and could he 
haye been certain that the rebel would have surrendered without a fight. 
I again repeat that, had Mr. Lincoln lived, he would have shouldered all 
the reeponsibUity. 

One thing is certain : had Jos. Johnston escaped and got into Richmond, 
and oaosed a larger list of killed and wounded than we had. General Sher- 
man would have been blamed. Then why not give him the full credit of 
oaptoring on the best terms the enemy^s last important army and its best 
general, and putting an end to the rebellion ? 

It was a JinaU worthy of Sherman's great march through the swamps 
and deserts of the South, a march not excelled by any thing we read of in 
modem military history. 

D. D. PoBTEB, Vice-AdmiraL 

(Written by the admiral in 1866, at the United States Narral 
Academy at Annapolis, Md., and mailed to General Sherman at 
St Lonisy Mo.) 

As soon as possible, I arranged with General Grant for 
certain changes in the organization of my army ; and the gen- 
eral also undertook to send to ISTortb Carolina some tug-boats 
and barges to carry stores from JSTewbem up as far as ICinston, 
whence they could be hauled in wagons to our camps, thus re- 
lieving our railroads to that extent. I undertook to be ready 
to march north by April 10th, and then embarked on the 
steamer Bat, Captain Barnes, for l^orth Carolina. We steamed 
down James Eirer, and at Old Point Comfort took on board 

33S £3n> OF THE WAR. 11818. 

mj brother, Seutor Sbennsn, and Mr. Edwin Stanton^ floncd 
the Secretuy of War, and proceeded 

Captain Barnes exp ro B Bod Iiim0d& 
extremdy obliged to me for taking bia yesael, as it bad relie^^ 
him of a most painfol dilemma. Eb explained that be bad b^^e 
detailed hy Admiral Porter to escort die Fjresidenfs muurnKm 
boat^ the Biver Qneen, in wbich cqpacitjr it became bis qp o mL 
duty to lode after MrsL laneoln. 13ie daj before mj anivaX^ 
(^ty Point, tbere bad been a grind review of a part ^ tbe Acran 
of the James, then commanded l^ Gteneral Qrd. ThePrasidL^ 
rode out from City Point with General Ghmt on borsebaok^ $0. 
companied by a nmnerona staE^ indnding Captain Baznes moj 
Mrs. Old ; but Mis. lanccln and Mtsl Grant bad followed id « 

The cayalcade reached the review-gronnd some five or eU 
miles out from City Pointy found the troops all ready, dnnmifp 
in line, and after the nsoal presentation of arms, the Fkeadent 
and party, followed i)y Mrs. Ord and Oaptain Barnes on bon^ 
back, rode the lines, and rotomed to the reviewing stand, lAkh 
meantime had been reached by Mrs. Lincoln and Mrs. Onntin 
their carriage, which had been delayed by the driver taking > 
wrong road. Mrs. Lincoln, seeing Mrs. Ord and Captain BuM 
riding with the retinue, and supposing that Mrs. Ord hadpe^ 
eonated her, turned on Captain Barnes and gave him a feflrfd 
scolding ; and even indulged in some pretty sharp upbraidiBg^ 
to Mra Ord. 

This made Barnes's position very unpleasant, so that he i^ 
much relieved when he was sent with me to North Carolin** 
The Bat was very fast, and on the moniing of the 29th w® 
were near Cape Hatteras ; Captain Barnes, noticing a propelltf 
coming out of Hatteras Inlet, made her turn back and pfl^* 
us in. TVe entered safely, steamed up Pamlico Sound ia^ 
Neuse Kiver, and the next morning, by reason of some derange 
ment of machinery, we anchored about seven miles hdo^ 
Newbem, whence we went up in Captain Barnes's barge. Ai 
soon as we arrived at Newbem, I telegraphed up to Generf 
Sehofield at 6olds1>oro' the fact of my return, and that I lii^ 

1W5.] END OF THE WAR. 333 

arranged with General Grant for the changes made necessary in 
the reorganization of the army, and for the boats necessary to 
carry up the provisions and stores we needed, prior to the re- 
newal of onr march northward. 

These changes amounted to constituting the left wing a dis- 
tinct army, under the title of " the Army of Georgia," under 
command of General Slocum, with liis two corps commanded 
by General Jeff. 0. Davis and General Joseph A. Mower ; the 
Tenth and Twenty-third Corps already constituted another army, 
"of the Ohio," under the command of Major-General Scholield, 
and hia two corps were commanded by Generals J. D. Cox and 
A. HL Terry. These changes were necessary, because army com- 
manders only could order courts-martial, grant discharges, and 
perform many other matters of discipline and administration 
which were indispensable ; but my chief purpose was to prepare 
the whole army for what seemed among the probabilities of the 
time — ^to fight both Lee's and Johnston's armies combined, in 
case their junction could be formed before General Grant could 
poflsibly follow Lee to North Carolina. 

General George H. Thomas, who still remained at Nashville, 
was not pleased with these changes, for the two corps with 
General Slocum, viz., the Fourteenth and Twentieth, up to that 
time, had remained technically a part of his " Army of the Cum- 
berland ; " but he was so far away, that I had to act to the best 
advantage with the troops and general officers actually present. 
I had specially asked for General Mower to command the 
Twentieth Corps, because I regarded him as one of the boldest 
and best fighting generals in the whole army. His predecessor, 
Greneral A. S. Williams, the senior division commander present, 
had commanded the corps well from Atlanta to Goldsboro', and 
it may have seemed unjust to replace him at that precise 
moment ; but I was resolved to be prepared for a most desperate 
and, as then expected, a final battle, should it fall on me. 

I returned to Goldsboro' from Newbem by rail the evening 
of March 30th, and at once addressed myself to the task of re- 
organization and replenishment of stores, so as to be ready to 
march by April 10th, the day agreed on with General Grant. 




The army was divided into the naiuil three partly ri^it and 
left wings, and centre. The tabular statementa heirewilih will 
give the exact composition of these separate armies, which by 
the 10th of April gave the following eflEective strength : 







FIfteaifh Corpt 





BfTVBftStBtll Oorpi* •••«••■ ■ 



A^WflflBBB ••••••••■•••• 





•■■•■^•"'^ •••• 
















"••• M^wim a •••*.••.■*. a 



Tenth Gorpf 

Tweoty-Uiird Corps. 



















In&ntry 80l,MS 

ArtlUery , 9.448 

Oayaliy fl^ 


Total Dumber of guns, 91. 





drmy Corps — Major- General Joim A. Logan commanding, 


Brevet Major- General C. R. Woods. 
Second Brigade. 


. W. B. Woods. 







Colonel E. F. Catterson. 

40th Illinois Infantry. 
46th Ohio Infantry. 
]03d Illinois Infantry. 
6th Iowa Infantry. 
97th Indiana Infantry. 
26th Illinois Infantry. 
100th Indiana Infantry. 

Third Brigade. 
Colonel G. A. Stone. 

4th Iowa Infantry. 
9th Iowa Infantry. 
25th Iowa Infantry. 
80th Iowa Infantry. 
81st Iowa Infantry. 


Major-General Wiluam B. Hazex. 


Second Brigade. 


Colonel W. S. Jones. 


87th Ohio Infantry. 


47th Ohio Infantry. 


53d Ohio Infantry. 


64th Ohio Infantry. 


83d Indiana Infantry. 


111th Illinois InfSdntry. 

Third Brigade. 
Brigadier-General J. M. Olnret . 

15th Michigan Infantry. 
70th Ohio Infantry. 
48th Illinois Infantry. 
90th Illinois Infantry. 
99th Indiana Infantry. 


Brevet Major- General J. E. Smith. 

Irst Brigade. Second Brigade. 

•General W. T. Clark. Colonel J. £. Tourtcllotte 

isconsin Infantry, 
diana Infantry, 
lois Infantry, 
diana Infantry, 
aois Infantry. 

56th Illinois Infantry. 

10th Iowa Infantry. 

80th Ohio Infantry. 

17th Iowa Infantry. 

Battalion 26th Missouri Infantry. 

Battalion 10th Missouri Infantry. 

4th Minnesota Infantry. 





Brigadier- General E. W. Rice. 

Second Brigade. 
Colonel E. N. Adams. 

12th Illinois Infantry. 
66th Illinois Infantry. 
81st Ohio Infantry. * 

Third Brigade. 
Colonel F. J. Horlbnt. 

7th Illinois Infantry. 
89th Iowa Infantry. 
50th Illinois Infantry. 
57th Illinois Infantry. 
110th U. S. Cord Inf. 


SnnitmUk Arm§ C</rpt — 2fajor-Gcneral F. P. Blaib commanding. 

BrijaJier-Grnenl U. F. Fohce. ^^H 

Satrnd Brl«*da, Ttiti BrfpM^| 

Btit--6<aanll.V.eprtgaa. Utnt-OolaDclJ. S V^V 

S.Mh WlscDiuui Infantrf. 10th niioaU InfuiIlT. 

35lh Xew Jersej Infaotiy. asth Indimlu Iiifaol^. 

4S(I Ohio InfuUT- G-d Wisconun Infioili? 

Srretl M<i}9t^0ti%trti IL D. Lxgosn. 
■M Brings. B« 


ISth Wbconda Inruitrr. SOth Oiiio Inlknlrj. 

45th IllinoLS lufuitrr. BStfa Obio b&Btrr. 

81st DlinoU lofuitrr. TSth OUo In&ntij. 

SOtb riinoia InCuitrj. 19(h Wlwxmun Jn&ntn 
SOth niJDoU lafuitrj. 
12th Wiaconun lufuitrf. 

Breta MajoT'Oatgni Q. A. Bmith. 

FliMBrlcads. ThMMfidfc 

Briodl«H3*iunlKr.7Dtti. Bi1i«««r Oiotlir. W ^«i 

SSd Indium Infuitiy. llth lom loAuitrj. 

32d Ohio Infantrj. IStb Iaw« bi&nt^. 

E3d Indimft Inrantrj. ISth Ion Infutiy. 

llth lUinoii lahntry. ISth lom Infkntoy. 

"d niinoli InfiDtrj. S2d UlinoU In&ntrr. 


15th Illinois Inlkntrj. 

C Battalion, 1st Michigan Artiller;. 9th Illiiu^ Ho«mted Uhntcf, 
1st Uinnesota Battery. O Compaii;, llth DHoiril <knkT< 

ISth Ohio Battery. Signal DeUoI 





^(furUenth Army Corpt — Brevet Major- General J. C. Davis commanding. 


Briffodier^Oeneral C. C. Walcott. 

Ilxtt Brigade. 
^*>«>Tet Brlg.-G«iiex8d HoUrt 

f J*^ Wisconflm Volunteers. 
rj<i Ohio Yoluntecrs. 
T*U^ Ohio Volunteers. 
ZJ^ Indiana Volunteers. 
?^tli Indiana Volunteers. 
*0<th Olinoia Volunteers. 

Second Brigade. 
Breret Brig«-OenenI BuelL 

2l8t Michigan Volunteers. 
18th Michigan Volunteers. 
69th Ohio Volunteers. 

Third Brigade. 
Cokmol Hambright. 

21 St Ohio Volunteers. 
74th Ohio Volunteers. 
88th PennsvlvaniaVolun 
l^ih Pennsylvania Volun. 


Brigadier-Oeneral J. D. Morgan. 

Sint Brigade. 
lUfidlar-GeiMnl Vaodevflr. 

loth ICchigan Volunteers. 
l4th Midufan Volunteers. 
l6th minob Volunteers. 
«Oth ininoia Volunteers. 
J7th New York Volunteers. 

Seoood Brigade. 
Brigadier-Oeneral MitchelL 

121st Ohio Volunteers. 
113th Ohio Volunteers. 
108th Ohio Volunteers. 
98th Ohio Volunteers. 
78th Illinois Volunteers. 
84th Illinois Volunteers. 

Thlid Brigade. 
Lieutenant-Oolonel liuigley. 

86th niinois Volunteers. 
86th Illinois Volunteers. 
110th Illinois Volunteers. 
126th Illinois Volunteers. 
52d Ohio Volunteers. 
22d Indiana Volunteers. 
87th Indiana (Det) Volun. 



Brevet Major-General A. Baird. 

17th Ohio Volunteers. 
3l8t Ohio Volunteers. 
89th Ohio Volunteers. 
92d Ohio Volunteers. 
82d Indiana Volunteers. 
S8d Missoiiri (Det) Volun. 
llfh Ohio Volunteers. 

Second Brigade. 
lientenant-GoIonel Doan. 

2d Minnesota Volunteers. 
105th Ohio Volunteers. 
75th Indiana Volunteers. 
87th Indiana Volunteers. 
101st Indiana Volunteers. 

Third Brigade. 
Brig.-Oeneral Qeorge 8. Qreenft 

14th Ohio Volunteers. 
88th Ohio Volunteers. 
10th Kentucky Volunteers. 
18th Kentucky Volunteers. 
74 th Indiana Volunteers. 


ArtiUeiy Brigade. 
Major Charles UouonTALiNO. 

Battery I, 2d Illinois. 
Battery 0, 1st Illinois. 

5th Wisconsin Battery. 
19th Indiana Battery. 


888 END OF THE WAR. [1865. 

TitenUtth Army Corpt — Major- General J. A. Moweb eommanding. 

Brnet Major- Gena-al A. S. TTiLLlisiE. 
FInl Brli^e. 6t«n)d Brlj^df. Th[rJ BHndP. 

CdIhkI J. L. Bd&ldga. Coloiiel Wimuo 11111117. ' Brt^.^Oeiunl J, S. Bobinioi. 

llh Penuaylruiis Tolont're. Sd MsssacbuscttB Yolun. S I at Wisconsin Voluntccn 
Slh CoDQOcticut To1uiitc«rt. Sii WiacoDBic Volunteers. Rial Ohio VaJunteerti. 
laMNewTork Voiunlcera, IBihNew JerteyVolvint'rg. 82d Ohio Toluntfere. 
MlatNe'rYockToluateers. IO71I1 New York Volunt'rs. 82d Ulinois Volunteera. 
150lh New York Voliinfrfl. lOlat Clinoia VolnnleerSL 
UZA New York Volun. 

Brrvet JUi^or-Gaund Jons W. GBinr. 

7l»t Brigtd«. f'taeai Bri^E. ThM Bri^rlo, 

Brent Brig.-Oan. S. Pirieo, Jr. Cokiiul V. H. Joan. Bnict Brlg.'Oeaan] Eorlheu. 

Atti Ohio Tolunteers. SSdNew Jers^jTolunteera. £9[h PenuBvlT&Dia YoIuil 

£Qlh Ohio Volunteers. 73d FcnnsjlTamit Volim. lUtb FeaDajlTHaia Yolun 

SOth Ohio Volunteers. 109lh pQnnejlvanit Yolun. SMh New York Volunlvcn. 

28lh Pcimijlvuiitt Volan. Iieth New York Volun. lOBd New York Volnnl'r*. 

inth Pcnnajlnnia Tolun. 1341h New York Volun. ■"—■"■" ■— ■ - 

Detacbment K. P. B. IMtli New York Volim. 

Bma Migor-General W. T. WuD. 

nnt Biigadh Bccetid Bi1g>d«. ThlM Brlgada. 

OoIddsI H. Oua. Cokmel Dulil muUiL Bivnt Brl(.-Q«ml Coggtma 

TOtb Indltnft Volunteers. 19th Hichigan VolonteerE. SOth CoDnecticnt Volun. 

19\ii Ohio Yolunteera. 22d Wiscoiuin Volunteers. 26th Wiaconsin Voltmi'ra 

102d Ulinoia Voluntcera. 33d Indiana Volunteers. 83d HuBftchnsetta Volun. 

lOSth riinota Volanteera. 8Sth Indiana Volunteers. CEth Ohio Volunteers. 

12etfa UinoU Volunteers. ISd Ohio Volnnl«era. 

1361b New York Vohinl'n 

Captain Yfanstaut. ■ 

Battery I, let Ifew York. Batter; C, 1st Ohio. 

Batter; H, iBt New York. Batter? E, Independent Pennajln 

Pontonicre, SBtb Indltma Veterui Volunteers. 

JdecbanicB and Engineers, ist Uichigon. 


1805.] END OF TOE WAR. 339 


TnUh Army Corp9 — Major- General A. H. Teuby command in//. 


Brevet Major- General H. W. BmoE. 

First Brigade. Second Brigade. Third Brigade. 

O>loiiel H. D. WaahbnnL Colonel Harvey Graham. Colonel N. W. Day. 

8tli Indiana YoluDteera. 159th New York Volunteers. 38th Massachusetts Vol. 

18th Indiana Yolunteers. 13th Connecticut Volunt^rs. 156th New York Volun. 

9th Oonnecticat Volunteers. 22d Iowa Volunteers. 128th New York Volun. 

I'^th New Hampshire Volun. 131st New York Volunteers. 17uth New York Volun. 

12th Ibdne Volunteers. 28th Iowa Volunteers. 176th New York Volun. 

I4th Maine Volunteers. 24th Iowa Volunteers. 
' 5 th New York Volunteers. 


Brevet Mqjor- General A. Ames. 

Slnt Brigade. Second Brigade. Third Brigade. 

OoloiMl B. Daggett Colonel J. S. Llttell. Colonel G. F. Granger. 

^d Ifew York Volunteers. 47th New York Volunteers. 4 th New Hampshire VoL 

H 2 th New York Volunteers. 48th New York Volunteers. 9th Maine Volunteers. 

^IVth New York Volunteers. 208d Pennsylvania Volun. 13th Indiana Volunteers. 

^*2d New York Volunteers. 97th Pennsylvania Volun. 115th New York Volun. 

76th Pennsylvania Volun. 169th New York Volun. 


Brigadier- General C. J. Painb. 

Fbit ^igade. Second Brigade. Third Brigade. 

^*«tiC BHg.-G«iMnI D. Bates. Brevet Brig.-Gen. S. Doncan. Colonel J. H. Holman. 

lat XT. a C. T. 4th U. S. C. T. 5th U. S. C. T. 

•Oth U. a C. T. 6th U. S. C. T. 27th U. S. C. T. 

107th U. a C. T. 39th U. S. C. T. 37th U. S. C. T. 


Brigade (not numbered). 
Brevet Brigadier-General J. C. Abbott. 

8d New Hampshire Volunteers. 6th Connecticut Volunteers. 

7th New Hampshire Volunteers. 7th Connecticut Volunteers, 

16th New York Heavy Artillery (six companies). 

16th New York Independent Battery. 

22d Indiana Battery. 

Light Company E, 8d United States Artillery. 

Company A, 2d Pennsylvania Heavy Artillery. 

Companies E and K, 12th New York Cavalry. 

Detachment Signal Corps. 

840 EOT) OF THE WAB. [1865. 

Twenty-third Army Corps — Major- General J. D. Cox commanding, 

rtBST Dinsiov. 
Briffadier- General Thokas H. Bugeb. 

First Brigade. 8«ooDd Brigade. Third Brigade. 

Brevet Brig.-Oeneral J. N. Btiles. Colonel J. 0. McQoiatoA. Oolonei M. T. Thomaa. 

120th Indiana YoL Infantry. 128d Indiana Vol. Infantry. 8ih Minnesota ToL Infan. 
124th Indiana Vol. Infantry. 129th Indiana YoL Infancy. 174th Ohio YoL Infantry. 
128th Indiana YoL Infantry. 180th Indiana Yol. Infancy. 178th Ohio YoL Infantry. 
180th Ohio Yolun. Infantry. 28th Michigan YoL Infan'y. 

Battery Elgin, Illinois Yolonteera. 


Major-General D. N. Couch. 

First Brigade. Second Brigade. Third Brigade. 

Colonel O. H. Moore. Colonel J. Mehringer. Colonel & A. 8tricklaDd. 

85th Michigan Yol. Infantry. 23d Michigan YoL Infantry. 9l8t Indiana YoL Infantry. 
26th Kentucky YoL Infantry. 80th Indiana YoL Infantry. 188d Ohio YoL Infantry. 

118th Ohio Yd. Infantry. 18l8t Ohio YoL Infantry. 

107th Illinois Yol. Infantry. 50th Ohio YoL Infantry. 

111th Ohio YoL Infantry. 

19th Ohio Battery. 


Bncfadicr- General S. P. Carter. 

First Briffndo. Second Brlf?ade. Third Brii^e. 

Colonol 0. W. Stool Colonel J. S. Casement. Colonel T. J. Henderson. 

8th Tennessee Yol. Infantry. 177th Ohio Yol. Infantry. 112th Illinois YoL Infancy 
1 2th Kentuckv Yol. Infantry, 65th Indiana YoL Infantry. 63d Indiana VoL Infantry 
10th Kentucky VoL Infantry. 6r»th Illinois YoL Infantry. 140th Indiana YoL Infan'v 
100th Ohio Volun. Infantr'y. lOSd Ohio Yoluu. Infantry. 
liMth Ohio Yolun. Infantry. 

Battery D, 1st Ohio Light Artillery. 
CiJtahy Ditmon — Miijyr- General Judson Kilpatrick commanding. 

First Brijrsdo. Second Brijnde. Third Brigade. 

BnPT. Brig. -(.ion. Th^w. J.»TorJan. Brevet Brig.-Gen. S. D. Atkins. Colonel Gooiige E. Spencer. 

9th IVnnsyh-ania Cav.Hlry. 02*1 Illinois Mounted Infan. 5th Kentucky Cavalry 
.S»i Keutuokv raxalrv. 10th Ohio CaralrT. 5th Ohio CaTalrv. 

5»i Kontuokv Cavalrv. \}\\\ Ohio Cavalrv. 1st Alabama Cavalrr. 

• • • m 

^\\\ huli;i«.^ Tavaln. Ij^t Ohio S4iuadron. 

Bil C;\v.-»lr\ . vth Michi<:r'in Cavalrv. 


Capiain T. Y. Beebe. 
10th AVisconsin Battery. 

1865.] END OF THE WAR. 311 

The railroads to our rear had also been repaired, so tliat stores 
were arriving verjfast, both from Morehead City and Wil- 
ttiiiigton. The country was so level that a single locomotive 
could haul twenty-five and thirty cars to a train, instead of only 
ten, as was the case in Tennessee and Upper Georgia. 

By the 5th of April such progress had been made, that I 
issued the following Special Field Orders, No. 48, prescribing 
tlxc time and manner of the next march : 

[Special Field Ordon, No. 48.] 

IIeadquabtsrs Militart Division op the Mibsibsippi, \ 
IX THE Field, Goldbbobo', Nobtu Carolina, April 5, 1865. ) 

C<n^ential to Army Commanders^ Corps Commanders^ and Chiefs of Staff 
Departments : 

The next grand objective is to place this army (with its full equipment) 
north of Roanoke River, facing west, with a base for sapplics at Norfolk, 
and at Winton or Mnrfreesboro' on the Chowan, and in fall commmiication 
with the Army of the Potomac, about Petersburg ; and also to do the enemy 
88 much harm as possible en route : 

1. To accomplish this result the following general plan will be followed, 
or modified only by written orders from these headquarters, should events 
reqnire a change : 

(1.) On Monday, the 10th of April, all preparations are presumed to 
be complete, and the outlying detachments will be called in, or given dlrec- 
tioDB to meet on the next march. All preparations will also be complete to 
place the railroad-stock back of Kinston on the one road, and below the 
Northeast Branch on the other. 

(2.) On Tuesday, the 11th, the columns will draw out on their lines 
of march, say, about seven miles, and close up. 

(8.) On Wednesday the march will begin in earnest, and will be koj>t 
up at the rate, say, of about twelve miles a day, or according to the amount 
of resistance. All the columns will dress to the left (which is the exposed 
flank), and commanders will study always to find roads by which they can, 
if necessary, perform a general left wheel, the • wagons to be escorted to 
some place of security on the direct route of march. Foraging and other 
detiuls may continue as heretofore, only more caution and prudence should 
be observed ; and foragers should not go in advance of the adtance-guard^ 
but look more to our right rear for corn, bacon, and meal. 

2. The left wing (Miyor-General Slocum commanding) will aim straight 
for the railroad-bridge near Smithfield; thence along up the Neuse River to 
the railroad-bridge over Neuse River, northeast of Raleigh (Powell's); 
thence to Warrenton, the general point of concentration. 

312 END OF THE WAR. [18G5. 

The centre (ILgor-General Schofield oommandiDg) will move to Whit- 
ler'a Mill, readj to 8uppK>rt the left mitil it is past Smithfield, when it will 
follow up (sDbstantiallT) Little Kiver to about Rolesville, ready at all 
times to move to the support of the left ; after passing Tar River, to move 
to Warrenton. 

The ri^ht wing (Mfgor-General Howard commanding), preceded bj the 
caralrr, will move rapidly on Pikeville and Nahnnta, then swing across to 
Bolah to Folk's Bridge, readj to make junction with the other armies in 
case the enemr offers battle this side of Nense River, about Smithfield ; 
thence, in case of no serious opposition on the left;, will work np toward 
Earpsboro', Andrews, B , and Warrenton. 

The cavalry (General Eilpatriek commanding), leaving its encmnbranecs 
with the right wing, will push as though straight for Tfeldon, until the 
«nesDTis across Tar River, and that bridge burned; then it will deflect 
toward Nashville and TVarrenton, keeping up communication with general 

& As soon as the army starts, the chief-quartermaster and commissary 
will prepare a rescpply of stores at some point on Pamlico or Albemarle 
Svxmis. r>faJy to be conveyed to Kinston or Winton and Murfreesboro^ 
SvV'C'riiiii: :o developments. As soon as they have satisfactory information 
1^ :^e arsiy is north of the Roanoke, they will forthwith establish a depot 
a* \nr;:on, w::h a sub-depot at Murfreesboro'. M2\]or-General Schofield 
wi" h/.i, is ht^retofore, Wilmington (with the bridge across Northern 
i-riT.j*:: is ?.:i ou:y."'j':". Newborn (and Kinston as its outpost), and will 
i-i v:v:\irt-i :-^ L. *i V\*L::t >n anl Murfreesboro' as soon as the time arrives 
:Vr vl-s: ::::vc\ TLv^ nivv Lis instrnotions from Admiral Porter to coOp- 
cr^iT^r* dmi ar.y c. luiuiiiiiiZ;: ot!:oer is authorized to call on the navy for 
dfcss:s:Ar..v jlv..I ».v\ jyrdii.^n, fi'.ways in writing, setting forth the reasons, of 
x\ *;.'.ol"; ncvcjdiAri'Jv ihe SAval commanJor must bo the judge. 

4» r.^e 4^uorAM'--oh;of will be with the centre habituallv, but mav in 
ivr*,^:: to ci:h»:r fiank where his presence may be needed, leaving a 
*:i:ro:V.s:vr :o rcooivo rej^orts. He requires^ absolutely, a report of each 
ar!i:y v^r i;rAui v:c:Ao2:i:iva: each ni^rht, whether any thing material has oc- 
ourrv\l or no!, for otton the absence of an enemy is a very important fact 
in uiLlitarv vrv>,j::io>::oatioa. 

l\v v^rvkr o:* Mcvor-iioaerAl "W. T. Sherman, 

L. M. D.VYTOX, Asshtant Adjutant' GencraL 

l»ut r^o ulb>lo prv^Moia Iveariie suddenly changed by the 
news of the t;i!l of UichTuond and Petersburg, which reached 
a;? at Cu>ldsborv»\ on t!io 0th of April. The Confederate Govem- 
nieiit, with Ltv'ji annv, had hastilv abandoned Richmond, fled in 

18fl5J END OF THE WAR. 343 

great disorder toward Danyille, and General Grant's whole army 
^was in dose pursuit. Of course, I inferred tliat General Lee 
would sacceed in making junction with General Johnston, with 
at least a fraction of his army, somewhere to my front. I at 
once altered the foregoing orders, and prepared on the day ap- 
XX>inted, viz., April 10th, to move straight on Baleigh, against 
the army of General Johnston, known to be at Smitliiield, and 
supposed to have about thirty-five thousand men. Wade Hamp- 
ton's cavalry was on his left front and Wheeler's on his right 
front, simply watching us and awaiting our initiative. Mean- 
time the details of the great victories in Virginia came thick 
and fast, and on the 8th I received from General Grant this 
conununication, in tlie form of a cipher-dispatch : 

IIeaoquartebs AitinEs of titb UyirsD States, ) 
Wilson's Station, April 6, 18G5. f 

irq^M^(?fneraZS]XSRMAN, Oold$haro\ Karth Carolina: 

AH indioatioiiB now are that Leo will attempt to roach Danville with the 
remnant of his force. Sheridan, who was up with him last night, reports 
all that is left with him — horse, foot, and dragoons — at twenty thousand, 
macli demoralized. We hope to reduce this numher one-half. I will push 
on to Bnrkesville, and, if a stand is made at Danville, will, in a very fow 
days, go there. If jon can possihlj do so, push on from where yon are, 
and let na see if we cannot finish the joh with Leo^s and Johnston's armies. 
Whether it will he hotter for you to strike for Groenshoro' or nearer to 
DanTiUe, yon will he hotter ahlo to judge when you receive this. Ecbcl 
armies now are the only strategic points to strike at. 

U. 8. Grant, Lieutenant- General, 

1 answered immediately that we would move on the 10th, 
prepared to follow Johnston wherever he might go. Prompt- 
ly on Monday morning, April 10th, the army moved straight 
on Smithfield ; the right wing making a circuit by the right, 
and the left wing, supported by the centre, moving on the two 
direct roads toward Ealeigh, distant fifty miles. General Terry's 
and General Kilpatrick's troops moved from their positions on 
the sonth or west bank of the Neuse River in the same general 
direction, by Cox's Bridge. On the 11th we reached Smith- 
field, and found it abandoned by Johnston's army, which had 

3i4 END OF THE WAB. [1M6. 

retreated hastily on Ealeigh, burning fhe bridges. To restore 
these consumed the remainder of the day, and daring that night 
I received a message from General Grant, at Appomattox, that 
General Lee had surrendered to him his whole army, which I at 
once announced to the troops in orders : 

[Spodal Field Orden, Ko. 54.] 

IIkadquabtkrs MiLTTikBT D1TX8IOK OF THE Mmuam, ) 
IN TUE Field, SioTHnxLD, Nobtu Casoldta, Aprii IS, 1845. ) 

TliO general commandiDg announces to the army tbat he has official 
notice from General Grant that General Lee surrendered to him his entin 
ormj, on the 0th Inst., at Appomattox Court-Uouse, Virginia. 

Glorj to God and our country, and all honor to our comrades in armi, 
toward whom we are marching 1 

A little more labor, a little more toil on our part, the great race isvod,* 
and our Government stands regenerated, after four long years of war. 

W. T. Sii£KMAX, Major- General commanding. 

Of course, this created a perfect fvrore of rejoicing, and ve 
all regarded the war as over, for I knew well that Gcnenl 
Johnston had no anny with wliich to oppose mine. So ttot 
the only questions that remained were, would he surrender tt 
Kaleigh ? or would lie allow his army to disperse into guerrilla- 
hands, to "die in the last ditch," and entail on his country an 
indefinite and prolonged military occupation, and of consequent 
desolation ? I knew well that Johnston's army could not be 
caught; the country was too open; and, without wagons, the 
men could escape us, disperse, and assemhle again at some place 
agreed on, and thus the war might he prolonged indefinitely. 

I then rcnicmhercd Mr. Lincoln's repeated expression that 
he wanted the rebel soldiers not only defeated, but " back at 
their homes, engaged in their civil pursuits." On the evening 
of the 12th I was with the head of Slocum's column, at Gulleys, 
and General Ivilpatrick's cavalry wiis still ahead, fighting "Wade 
Hampton's rear-guard, with orders to push it through Raleigh, 
svhile I would give a more southerly course to the infantry col- 
unms, so as, if ])ossible, to prevent a retreat southward. On 
the 13th, early, I entered Raleigh, and ordered the several heads 
of colunm toward Ashville, in the direction of Salisbury or 

1865.] END OF THE WAR. M5 

Charlotte. Before reaching Ealeigh, a locomotive came down 
the road to meet me, passing through both Wade Hampton's 
and Kilpatrick's cavalry, bringing four gentlemen, with a letter 
from Governor Yance to me, asking protection for the citizens 
of Baleigh. These gentlemen were, of course, dreadfully ex- 
cited at the dangers through which they had passed. Among 
th^n were ex-Senator Graham, Mr. Swain, president of Chapel 
Hill TTniversity, and a Surgeon Warren, of the Confederate 
army. They had come with a flag of truce, to which they were 
not entitled ; still, in the interest of peace, I respected it, and 
permitted them to return to Ealeigh with their locomotive, to 
assure the Governor and the people that the war was substan- 
tially over, and that I wanted the civil authorities to remain in 
the execution of their oflSce till the pleasure of the President 
could be ascertained. On reaching Ealeigh I found these same 
gentlemen, with Messrs. Badger, Bragg, Holden, and others, 
but Governor Yance had fled, and could not be prevailed on 
to return, because he feared an arrest and imprisonment. From 
the Ealeigh newspapers of the 10th I learned that General 
Stoneman, with his division of cavalry, had come across the 
mountains from East Tennessee, had destroyed the railroad 
at Salisbury, and was then supposed to be approaching Greens- 
boro'. I also learned that General Wilson's cavalry corps was 
" smashing things " down about Selma and Montgomery, Ala- 
bama^ and was pushing for Columbus and Macon, Georgia ; and 
I also had reason to expect that General Sheridan would come 
down from Appomattox to join us at Ealeigh with his superb 
cavalry corps. I needed more cavalry to check Johnston's re- 
treat, so that I could come up to him with my infantry, and 
therefore had good reason to delay. I ordered the railroad to 
be finished up to Ealeigh, so that 1 could operate from it as a 
base, and then made — 

[Special Field Orders, No. &5.J 

Headquarters Miutart Dmrtow o» the Mibsissxppi, ) 
ZN THE Field, Saleioh, Nobtb Carolina, April 14, 18G5. ) 

The next movement will be on Ashboro', to tnm the position of the 
enemy at the '* Companj^s Shops '' in rear of Haw Biver Bridge, and at 

846 END OF THE VAB. [1868. 

tiffawibaro\ and to <tal <tf Ms oolj ayidlAble Um of mfereit by StBtborj 
and Chailotto : 

1. G«iMnl dpatriok will keep up a ihoir of pnimdt in tho dlreetion 
of HOUboro* and Graham, but be nady to eroaB Haw BSver on General 
Howard'a bridge, near Ffttsboro', and tiienoe will opemte toward Greens- 
boro\ en tbe right front of the ri^t wing. 

5. The right wing, Mijor-General Howard oommanding, will moT0 out 
on the Chapel Hill road, and send a li^t diviflioii np in the direction of 
Chapel ffillUniTersi^ to act in connection nifh the caTahy; but the main 
eotnmna and truns wfll move tia Hackney's Crow-Boad^ and Trader's HUl, 
Plttsboio*, BL Lawrence, etc, to be followed bj the caTahy and light 
AriiloB, as soon as tbe bridge is laid over Haw Btver. 

8. The centre, IDifor-General Schofieid oommandinR will move via 
HcQy (^Nriags, New mn, Haywood, and Koffitt's IfiDs. 

4k The kit wing, ^ijor-General Slooom commanding^ will more rapidly 
by the ATten^s Ferry road, Carthage, Caledonia, and Coz*s KillsL 

6. An the troops will draw well oat on the roada deaignated dnring to- 
day and to-morrow, and on the following day will move with all posrible 
nipi£ty!brAshboro\ Kofiirther destruction of rsSroads, mills, cotton, and 
prodoee, will be made without the q>ecific ordars of an army comsnander, 
and the inhabitants will be dealt with kindly, looking to an early recon* 
ctRatlcn. The tioopa wHl be permitted, howerer, to gather forage and 
|^ivisi<m9 as hex>frtQfor&; only more care should be token not to strip the 
piX^^c^r c<Aj;$es t<x* dosolr. 

l^y order of Gonend TT, T, Sbcnuan, 

I^ M. Dattox, Auiitant Adjutant- GeneraL 

Thus matters stooJ, \rhen on the morning of the 14th 
Gcnend Kilj\atrick rc^x^rtcd from Durham's Station, twenty-cix 
miles up the rsulroad toward Ilillsboro', that a flag of trace had 
come iu f n>m the enemy with a package from Grenend Johnston 
adilrcssed to me. Taking it for granted that this was prelimi- 
narr to a siuronder, I ordered the message to be sent me at 
Ivaleiglu and on the 14th receired from General Johnston a let- 
ter datotl April 13, 1SC5, in these words : 

Th<> result* of tho rooont campaign in Yirginia hare changed the relatire 
militArT ox>nd:tion of tho boUlf ercnts. I am^ therefore, indnced to address 
vou in this fv^nn tho inqnirr whether, to stop tbe ftirther effasion of blood 
and dorastaiion of propertr, tou are willing to make a temporary snspen- 
^on of aoUve operations, and to communicate to lieutenant-General Grant, 
commanding the armies of the United States^ the Kqnest that he will take 

1865.] END OF THE WAR. 847 

like action in regard to other armieg, the object being to permit the civil 
authorities to enter into the needful arrangements to terminate the existing 

To wliich I replied as follows : 


IN TiUB FiXLD, Balxiqh, Nobth Cakolina, April 14, 1805. ) 
Geiural J. E. Johnbton, commanding Confederate Army, 

Gekebal: I have tliis moment received your communication of this 
date. I am fuUj empowered to arrange with yon any terms for the sus- 
pension of further hostilities between the armies commanded by yon and 
those commanded by myself and will be willing to confer with yon to that 
end. I will limit the advance of my main column, to-morrow, to Morrisvillc, 
and the cavalry to the university, and expect that you will also maintain 
the present position of your forces until each has notice of a failure to agree. 

That a basis of action may be had, I undertake to abide by the same 
terms and conditions as were made by Generals Grant and Lee at Appomat- 
tox Oonrt-House, on the 9th instant, relative to our two armies ; and, fur- 
thermore, to obtain from General Grant an order to suspend the movements 
of any troops from the direction of Virginia. General Stoneman is under 
my command, and my order will suspend any devastation or destruction 
contemplated by him. I will add that I really desire to save the people of 
Korth Carolina the damage they would sustain by the march of this army 
through tlie central or western parts of the State. 

I am, with respect, your obedient servant, 

W. T. Sherman, Major- General. 

I sent my aide-de-camp, Colonel McCoj, up to Durliam's 
Station with this letter, with instructions to receive the answer, 
to telegraph its contents back to me at Kaleigh, and to ar- 
range for an interview. On the 16th I received a reply from 
General Johnston, agreeing to meet me the next day at a point 
midway between our advance at Durham and his rear at Hills- 
boro*. I ordered a car and locomotive to be prepared to convey 
me up to Durham's at eight o'clock of the morning of April 
iTthu Just as we were entering the car, the telegraph-operator, 
whose office was up-stairs in the depot-building, ran down to me 
and said that he was at that instant of time receiving a most 
important dispatch in cipher from Morehead City, which I 
ought to sec. I held the train for nearly half an hour, when he 

348 END OF THE WAR. [1865. 

returned with the message translated and written ont. It was 
from Mr. Stanton, announcing the assassination of Mr. Lincoln, 
the attempt on the life of Mr. Seward and son, and a suspicion 
that a like fate was designed for Greneral Grant and all the prin- 
cipal officers of the Government. Dreading the effect of such 
a message at that critical instant of time, I asked the operator if 
any one besides himself had seen it ; he answered no. I then 
bade him not to reveal the contents by word or look till I came 
back, which I proposed to do the same afternoon. The train 
then started, and, as we passed Morris's Station, General Logan, 
commanding the Fifteenth Corps, came into my car, and I told 
him I wanted to see him on my return, as I had something very 
important to communicate. He knew I was going to meet 
General Johnston, and volunteered to say that he hoped I would 
succeed in obtaining his surrender, as the whole army dreaded 
the long march to Charlotte (one hundred and seventy-five 
miles), already begun, but which had been interrupted by the 
receipt of General Johnston's letter of the 13th. We reached 
Durham's, twenty-six miles, about 10 A. m., where General Kil- 
patrick had a squadron of cavalry drawn up to receive me. We 
passed into the house in which he had his headquarters, and 
soon after mounted some led horses, which he had prepared for 
myself and staff. General Kilpatrick sent a man ahead with a 
white flag, followed by a small platoon, behind which we rode, 
and were followed by the rest of the escort. We rode up the 
nillsboro' road for about five miles, when our fiag-bearer dis- 
covered another coming to meet him. They met, and word was 
passed back to us that General Johnston was near at hand, when 
we rode forward and met Genei*al Johnston on horseback, riding 
side by side with General Wade Hampton. We shook hands, 
and introduced our respective attendants. I asked if there was 
a place convenient where we could be private, and General 
Johnston said he had passed a small farm-house a short dis- 
tance back, when we rode back to it together side by side, our 
staff-officers and escorts following. We had never met before, 
though we had been in the regular army together for thir- 
teen years ; but it so happened that we had never before come 


1865.] END OF THE WAR. 349 

toother. He %^as some twelve or more years my senior ; but 
-we knew enough of each other to be well acquainted at once. 
'We Boon reached the house of a Mr. Bennett, dismounted, and 
left our horses with orderlies in the road. Our^officers, on foot, 
passed into the yard, and General Johnston and I entered tlie 
fimall frame-house. We asked the farmer if we could have the 
use of his house for a few minutes, and he and his wife with- 
drew into a smaller log-house, which stood close by. 

As soon as we were alone together I showed him the dis- 
patch announcing Mr. Lincoln's assassination, and watched him 
doBely. The perspiration came out in large drops on his fore- 
liead, and he did not attempt to conceal his distress. lie dc- 
noTineed the act as a disgrace to the age, and hoped I did not 
charge it to the Confederate Government. I told him I could 
2iot believe that he or General Lee, or the officers of the Cou- 
lederate army, could possibly be privy to acts of assassination ; 
"but I would not say as much for Jeff. Davis, George Sanders, 
and men of that stripe. We talked about the effect of this act 
on the country at large and on the armies, and he realized that 
it made my situation extremely delicate. I explained to him 
that I had not yet revealed the news to my own personal staff 
or to the army, and that I dreaded the effect when made known 
in Saleigh. Mr. Lincoln was peculiarly endeared to the soldiers, 
and I feared that some foolish woman or man in Baleigh might 
say something or do something that would madden our men, 
and that a fate worse than that of Columbia would befall the 

I then told Johnston that he must be convinced that he 
oould not oppose my army, and that, since Leo had surrendered, 
he oould do the same with honor and propriety. lie plainly 
and repeatedly admitted this, and added that any further fight- 
ing would be " murder; " but he thought that, instead of surren- 
dering piecemeal, we might arrange terms that would embrace 
dU the Confederate armies. I asked him if he could control 
other armies than his own ; he said, not then, but intimated that 
he could procure authority from Mr. Davis. I then told him 
that I had recently had an interview with General Grant and 

350 E^ OF THE WAR [18«5. 

Pre&ident Lincoln, and that I was possessed of their views ; that 
with them and the people North there seemed to be no vindic- 
tive feeling against the Confederate armies, bat there was against 
Davis and his political adherents; and that the terms that 
General Grant had given to General Lee's army were certainly 
most generons and liberal. All this he admitted, bat always 
recurred to the idea of a aniversal sarrender, embracing his own 
army, that of Dick Taylor in Loaisiana and Texas, and of 
Maury, Forrest, and others, in Alabama and Georgia. General 
Johnston's account of oar interview in his "Karrative" (page 
102, €t seq^ is qaite accarate and correct, only I do not recall 
his naming the capitulation of Loeben,to which he refers. Our 
conversation was very general and extremely cordial, satisfying 
me that it could have but one result, and that which we all 
desired, viz., to end the war as quickly as possible ; and, being 
anxious to return to Ealeigh before the news of Mr. Lincoln's 
assassination could be divulged, on General Johnston's saying 
that he thought that, during the night, he could procure author- 
ity to act in the name of all the Confederate armies in existence, 
we agreed to meet again the next day at noon at the same place, 
and parted, he for Ilillsboro' and I for Ealeigh. 

We rode back to Durham's Station in the order we had come, 
and then I showed the dispatch announcing Mr. Lincoln's death. 
I cautioned the officers to watch the soldiers closely, to prevent 
anv violent retaliation bv them, leavinof that to the Government 
at 'Washington ; and on our way back to Ealeigh in the cars I 
showed the same dispatch to General Logan and to several of 
the officers of the Fifteenth Corps that were posted at Morris- 
ville and Jones's Station, all of whom were deeply impressed 
by it ; but all gave their opinion that this sad news should not 
change our general course of action. 

As soon as I reached Ealeigh I published the following 
orders to the armv, announcinof the assassination of the Presi- 
dent, and I doubt if, in the whole land, there were more sincere 
mourners over his sad fate than were then in and about Raleigh. 
I watched the effect closely, and was gratified that there was no 
single act of retaliation ; though I saw and felt that one single 


woid by me would have laid the city in ashes, and turned its 
whole population houseless upon the country, if not worse : 

[Special Field Orders, No. M.] 

Hkadquabtebs 3I1LITABT Division of the Missibsipti, ) 
nr THE Field, Balsiqu, Nobtu Caboiasa^ Ayril 17, 1865. f 

• The general commanding announces, with pain and sorrow, that on the 
Qvening of the 14th instant, 'at the theatre in Washington city, his Excel- 
lenoy the President of the United States, Mr. Lincoln, was assassinated by 
one who uttered the State motto of Virginia. At the same time, the Sec- 
xetary of State, Mr. Seward, while suffering from a broken arm, was also 
stabbed bj another murderer in his own house, but still survives, and his 
eon was wounded, supposed fatally. It is believed, by persons capable of 
Jndg^mg, that other high officers were designed to share the same fate. 
Thus it seems that our enemy, despairing of meeting us in open, manly 
warfare, begins to resort to the assassin^s tools. 

Your general does not wish you to infer that this is universal, for he 
Imows that the great mass of the Confederate army would scorn to sanc- 
tion sach acts, but he believes it the legitimate consequence of rebellion 
against rightful authority. 

We have met every phase which this war has assumed, and must now 
be prepared for it in its last and worst shape, that of assassins and guer- 
rillas; but woe unto the people who seek to expend tbeir wild passions in 
aaoh a manner, for there is but one dread result ! 

By order of Mfjor-General W. T. Sherman, 

L« M. Datton, Assistant Adjutant- General, 

During the evening of the 17th and morning of the ISth 
I saw nearly all the general officers of the army (Schofield, Slo- 
com, Howard, Logan, Blair), and we talked over the matter of 
the conference at Bennett's house of the day before, and, without 
exception, all advised me to agree to some terms, for they all 
dreaded the long and harassing march in pursuit of a dissolv- 
ing and fleeing army — a march that might carry us back again 
over the thousand miles that we had just accomplished. We all 
knew that if we could bring Johnston's army to bay, we could 
destroy it in an hour, but that was simply impossible in the coun- 
try in which we found ourselves. We discussed all the probabili- 
tieSj among which was, whether, if Johnston made a point of it, I 
should assent to the escape from the countiy of Jeff. Davis and 


bis fogitiTe cabinet; and 8ome one of 1117 genenl oflBcen^ etftber 
Logtn or Blair, innsted ihat^ if asked toar^ we sbould even pro- 
Tide a vessel to oany tbem to KasBau from Obariestam 

Tbe next moming I again started in die can to Dmbam's 
Station, aotompanied by most of my personal stafl^ and bj Gen- 
ersls Blair, Bsny, Howard, etc, and, resching G^menl Eilpat- 
lick'a beadqnarters at Dnibam's, we again moonted, and rode, 
widi the same escort of the day before^ to Bennetts honse, 
veaehingihae ponetoally at noon. Gteneral Johnston had not 
yet arrived, bnt a conrier shortly came, and r ep o rted him as on 
the way. It mnst have been nearly 2 p. ic when he arrived, as 
before, with General Wade Hampton. He had halted his 
escort out of a^t, and we again entered Bennetl^s house, and I 
doeed the door. GeneralJohnston then assured me Ihat he had 
anthority over all die Gonf ederate anniee^ so that diey wonld 
obey his orders to surrender on the same terms with his own, but 
he argued that^ to obtain so dbeajdy this desiTable result, I oog^t 
to give his men and officers scmie asBuranoe of their politioal 
rights aftw their surrender. I explained to him that Mr. Ian- 
coIn^s proclamation of amnesty, of December 8, 1863, . still in 
force* enabled eveir Confederate soldier and officer, below the 
rmk of colonel, to obtain an absolute pardon, by simply laying 
down his anujs and taking the common oath of allegiance, and 
that Genend Grsmt, in accepting the smrender of General Lee's 
anttT« had extended the same principle to aU the officers, Gen- 
eral Lee incladed ; such a pardon, I understood, would restore to 
them all their ri^ts of citizenship. But he insisted that the 
oi£o»s and men of the Confederate army were unnecessarily 
aLarmed about this matter, as a sort of bugbear. He then said 
thdi: Mr« IVxx'kenridge was near at hand, and he thou^t that it 
wouVi N? wvll for him to be present I objected, on the score 
:h.i: he w^s^s^ then in Pavis^s cabinet, and our negotiations should 
be s.v;itiued sirwtly to belligerents. He then said Breckenridge 
w:fc> a'majv>r-5eneral in the Confederate army, and might sink 
bi* clur$ctef of Soorvtary of War. I consented, and he sent 
oae of hi* staiS'-oJ^oor^ l^aolc. who soon returned with Brecken- 
rMfi^v 30k1 h^ ««ttiMvd the room. General Johnston and I then 


186ft.] END OF THE WAR. 353 


again went over the whole ground, and Breckenridge confirmed 

what he had said as to the uneasiness of the Southern ofiicers 

and Boldiera about their political rights in case of surrender. 

While we were in consultation, a messenger came with a parcel 

of papers, which General Johnston said were from Mr. Keagan, 

Poetmaster-GeneraL He and Breckenridge looked over them, 

and, after some side conversation, he handed one of the papers 

to me. It was in Beagan's handwriting, and began with a long 

preamble and terms, so general and verbose, that I said they 

"were inadmissible. Then recalling the conversation of Mr. 

Idnooln, at City Point, I sat down at the table, and wrote off 

the terms, which I thought concisely expressed his views and 

wiflhes, and explained that I was willing to submit these terms 

to the new President, Mr. Johnson, provided that both armies 

fihonld remain in statu quo until the truce therein declared should 

expire. I had full faith that General Johnston would reli- 

giondy respect the truce, which he did ; and that I would be the 

gainer, for in the few days it would take to send the papers to 

Washington, and receive an answer, I could finish the railroad 

up to Baleigh, and be the better prepared for a long chase. 

17 either Mr. Breckenridge nor General Johnston wrote one 
word of that paper. I wrote it myself, and announced it as the 
bert I could do, and they readily assented. 

While copies of this paper were being made for signature, 
the officers of our staffs commingled in the yard at Bennett's 
house, and were all presented to Generals Johnston and Breck- 
enridge. All without exception were rejoiced that the war was 
over, and that in a very few days we could turn our faces tow- 
ard home. I remember telling Breckenridge that he had better 
get away, as the feeling of our people was utterly hostile to the 
political element of the South, and to him especially, because he 
waa the Vice-President of the United States, who had as such 
announced Mr. Lincoln, of Illinois, duly and properly elected 
the President of the United States, and yet that he had after- 
ward openly rebelled and taken up arms against the Govern- 
ment. He answered me that he surely would give us no more 
tronble, and intimated that he would speedily leave the country 



forefcr. I mayliftTe alsoftdvised him that Mr. Davis too should 
get abroad as soon as possible. 

The papeis were duly ogned; we parted about dark, and 
m J partj retmnied to Saleigh. Early the next momiiig, April 
rith, I dispatched by telegraph to Morehead City to pre 
pore a fl eet st e amer to cany a mesBenger to Washington, and 
salt Major Hieniy Hitchcock down by rail, bearing the following 
letters^ and agreement with General Johnston, with instroctiona 
to be Tery careM to let nothing escape him to the greedy news- 
paper correspondents, bat to sobmit his papers to G^end Hal- 
leek. General Grant, or the Secretaiy of War, and to bring me 
baek with all expedition their orders and instroctiona. 

On their face they recited that I had no authority to make 
final terms inrolving dvil or political qnestions, bnt that I sub- 
mitted them to the proper quarter in Washington, for their ac- 
tion ; and the letters folly explained that the military, sitoation 
was sodi that the delay was an advantage to us. I cared little 
whether they were approved, modified, or disapproved in toto; 
«HiIy I wanted instroctiona. Many of my general officers, aoiong 
whom. I am almost positive, were Generals Logan and Blair, 
urg^l me to accept the "terms," without reference at all to 
Washington, but 1 preferred the latter course : 


ur THJB ITiEiPy RiLEiuH, NoBTH Cakolxxa, April 18, 1865. f 
General 11. W. TTattick, Chief <if Staff, Woihington, D. C. 

Ge>'csax : I received vonr di:$patch describing the man Clark, detailed 
to assassinate me. lie had better be in a hnny, or he will be too late. 

The news of Mr. Lincoln's death produced a most intense effect on our 
troops. At first I feared it would lead to excesses ; but now it has soft- 
ened down, and can easily be guided. None evinced more feeling than 
General Johnston, who admitted that the act was calculated to stain his 
cause with a dark hue ; and he contended that the loss was most serious to 
the Soutli, who had bognm to realize that Mr. Lincoln was the best friend 
thev had. 

I cannot beliovo that even Mr. Davis was privy to the diabolical plot, 
but think it the emanation of a set of young men of the South, who are 
very devils. I want to throw upon the South the care of this class of men, 
who will soon be as obnoxious to their industrial classes as to na. 


1866J END OF THE WAR. 353 

Had I poshed Johnston^s army to an extremitj, it would have didpersed, 
and doDO infinite mischief. Johnston informed me that General Stone- 
man had been at -Salisharj, and was now at StatesvUle. I have sent him 
orders to come to me. 

General Johnston also informed me that General Wilson was at Colum- 
boa, Georgia, and he wanted me to arrest his progress. I loaye that to you. 

Indeed, if the President sanctions my agreement with Johnston, our in- 
terest is to cease all destruction. 

Please fpxe all orders necessary according to the views the Executive 
ax&x take, and influence him, if possible, not to vary the terms at all, for I 
imve considered every thing, and believe that, the Confederate armies once 
lispersed, we can adjust all else fairly and well. I am, yours, etc., 

"\V. T. SiiEEiiAJT, Major- General commanding. 

Headquastees Military Division of tub Mississippi, ) 
IE Field, Raleigh, Nobtu Cabolixa, April Id, lb65. ) 


ttUuienant- General U. S. Gbant, or Major-General Uallece, Washing- 
Urn^ D. C. 

Gehsbal : I inclose herewith a copy of an agreement made tliis day be- 
;ween General Joseph E. Johnston and myself, which, if approved by the 
?rendent of the United States, will produce peace from the Potomac to the 
itio Grande. Mr. Breckenridge was present at our conference, in the ca- 
laoity of migor-general, and satisfied me of the ability of General Johnston 
o OBXTJ out to their full extent the terms of this agreement ; and if you 
vUl get the President to simply indorse the copy, and commission me to 
tarrj out the terms, I will follow them to the conclusion. 

YoQ will observe that it is an absolute submission of the enemy to the 
awftil ftnthority of the United States, and disperses his armies absolutely ; 
knd tlie point to which I attach most importance is, that the dispersion and 
lisbandment of these armies is done in such a manner as to prevent their 
dreakixig np into guerrilla bands. On the other hand, we can retain just as 
orach of an army as wo please. I agreed to the mode and manner of the 
Burrender of arms set forth, as it gives the States the means of repressing 
gaerrillas, which we could not expect them to do if we stripped them of all 

Both Generals Johnston and Breckenridge admitted that slavery was 
dead, and I could not insist on embracing it in such a paper, because it can 
be made with the States in detail. I know that all the men of substance 
Sonth rincerely want peace, and I do not believe they will resort to war 
again daring this century. I have no doubt that they will in the future 
be perfectly subordinate to the laws of the United States. The moment 
mj action in this matter is approved, I can spare five corps, and will 
Ilk for orders to leave General Schofield here with the Tenth Oorps, and 


to march mytOt with the Fomtoenth, fUtMstlt, SflrcBtMBfh, TvantftO, 
and Twenty-third Oorpi via BnrkMrilla and GoriconilU to VradeiU 
or Eagerstown, Maryland, there to be paid and nmatand oat. 

The qaestioa of finance is now the chief taia, and «wmj nldte wad 
ofBoer not needed ehonld be got borne at work. I would lika to ba aUa to 
begin the march north by Uay 1st. 

I urge, on the part of the President apeedj aotiaa, aa It It hnpc ria nt to 
get the Oonfederate Brmiee to their homea aa well aa our own. 

I am, with great reapeot, yonr obedient Mrrant, 

"W. T. Qmaus, Jfi^ffaiMrvJ timmaadtwi. 

Memorandum, or Btuii qf Affrtemtnt, mad* tkU IStt Aiy ^ AfrU a. n^ 
1866, near Durham'i SMUm, te tU Statt ^ Ifortk OknUmK, ^ mA 
^ttwem Qeneral JobethE. JoaawioM, eomma»ifyig tfa Olii^fiitraUAmg^ 
attd Major-Qtiunil Whuak T. Bhkbiuv, umwkmmii»f Uta-Armg ^ 

tU VniM i^Ui in iforth CarMna, Mi p rmK t : 

1. The contending armiea now In the field to iB«i«**h» fln fMv jwm 
mm notJoe ia ^ven by the oommandlng general of any ona to to oggtamlt^ 
and reasonable time— a^, fbrty-d^t honn — allowad. 

2. The Oonfederate srndes sow In exiatenee to be diabandcd ucd cod— 
dnoted to their lereral State ca^tali, then to depoilt their arms and |iDb— 
lis property in the State ArsenBl; and MOh offleer aad man to exeonieanX 
file an agreement to oease from acta of war, and to aUde the action of tbe 
State and Federal authority. The nnmbw of arma and monitioDs of vtn 
to be reported to the Chief of Ordnance at Washington City, mltJaot to tb« 
future action of the OongresB of the United Stat«a, and, in the mean tint, tc 
be oscd solely to muntain peace and order within the bordera of tbe S 

8. The reoognitioD, by the Ezecntive of tbe United Btatea, of the m 
State governments, on their officers and Legislatures takii^ the oatha pee- ' 
scribed by the Constitntion of the United States, and, whmv ooaflh^Brrr 
Stato govemmeDts have resulted from the war, the le^timacy of all abalL 
he BubmittDd to the Snpreme Court of the Umted States. 

4. The reestAblishnient of all the Federal Oonrta in the aereral Statar 
with powers as defined by the Constitationof the United Stateaandof ft* 
States rcspectiyelj. 

6. The people and inhahitantsof all tbe States to be goar«ntMd,nftr 
as the Fiecutire can, their political rights and franohisea, at wdl ai A«r 
rights of person and property, as defined by the Constitntion of tbe ITnllsd 
States and of the States respectively. H Ur 

e. TbeExccntiveaathorityoftheGovermnentctftheUidtedStitMatit I j^ 
to disturb any of the people by reason of the late war, lOloiigMtlMtylht 

1865J END OF THE WAR. 357 

in peace and qoiet, abstain from acts of armed hostility, and obey the laws 
in existence at the place of their residence. 

7. In general terms — the war to cease ; a general amnesty, so far as the 
Ezecotive of the United States can command, on condition of the disband- 
ment of the Confederate armies, the distribution of the arms, and the re- 
Bnmption of peaceful pursuits by the officers and men hitherto composing 
said armies. 

Not being fully empowered by our respective principals to fulfill these 
terms, we individually and officially pledge ourselves to promptly obtain the 
necessary authority, and to carry out the above programme. 

W. T. Sherman, Majar- General, 
Commanding Army of tJie United States in North Carolina, 
J. E. Johnston, General, 
Commanding Confederate States Army in North Carolina, 

Major Hitchcock got off on the morning of the 20th, and I 
reckoned that it would take him four or five days to go to 
liVashington and back. During that time the repairs on all the 
Tailroads and telegraph-lines were pushed with energy, and we 
also got possession of the railroad and telegraph from Kaleigh 
to IVeldon, in the direction of Norfolk. Meantime the troops 
remained statu quo^ our cavalry occupying Durham's Station 
and Chapel Hill. General Slocum's head of column was at 
Aven's Ferry on Cape Fear River, and General Howard's was 
stnmg along the railroad toward Hillsboro'; the rest of the 
annj was in and about Ealeigh. 

On the 20th I reviewed the Tenth Corps, and was much 
pleased at the appearance of General Paines's division of black 
troops, the first I had ever seen as a part of an organized army ; 
and on the 21st I reviewed the Twenty-third Corps, which had 
been with me to Atlanta, but had returned to Nashville, 
had formed an essential part of the army which fought at 
Franklin, and with wliich General Thomas had defeated Gen- 
eral Hood in Tennessee. It had then been transferred rapidly 
by rail to Baltimore and Washington by General Grant's orders, 
and thence by sea to North Carolina. Nothing of interest 
happened at Haleigh till the evening of April 23d, when Major 
Hitchcock reported by telegraph his return to Morehead City, 
and that he would come up by rail during the night. He 

S58 END OF THE WAB. [1865. 

at 6 A. iL, April 24tli, accompanied by General Giant 
and one or two officers of his stafiE^ who had not tdc^raphed the 
fact of their being on the train, for pmdential reasons. Of 
course, I was both surprised and pleased to see the general, soon 
learned that my terms with Johnston had' been disapproved, 
was instructed by him to give the forty-eight hours' notice re- 
. quired by the terms of the truce, and afterward to proceed to 
attack or follow him. I immediately tel^raphed to General 
Kilpatrick, at Durham's, to have a mounted courier ready to 
carry the following message, then on its way up by rail, to the 
rebel linos : 

IllADQUABlXBa MiLXTABT DrnmOK QV fHB Miaw—ri w^ 1 

uc nu FiSLD, Kaxiiob, Nobtb Caboldta, AprU S4| 18S5-^ a. x. | 
^#M#ral JoBXSTOK, €cmmanding Oar^federaU Armif^ Ore&nthoro*: 

y^Hi will take notice that the trace or saspennon of hostilities agreed 
to between us will cease in forty-eight hours after this is reoeived at joor 
Imes, uader the fir»t of the articles of agreement 

W. T. Shebicav, Mqjar-OeneMl 

At the same time I wrote another short note to Gteneral 
Johu$ton^ of the same date: 

I bav^j rvj»rie* frvHii Washincton to my commnnications of April 18th, 
1 iiiu iiAi^ructcd to limit zur operations to xonr immediate command, and 
tto£ to attempt civil no^^iation^. I therefore demand the surrender of 
>our arfUT ca the siame terms as were given to General Lee at Appomattox, 
Aj.»rU tfth iiiaitaatv purely and simply. 

\.^t v.vur^^ K>th these pajvrs were shown to General Grant 
hh the tiiue^ before they were sen^ and he approved of them. 

Ac the $teue time orders \, ^'re sent to all parts of the army 
r*.* be !Vii'/y to rv^uuie the pursuit of the enemy on the expira- 
ric;i oc the tl^rtv-ei^ht hours* truce, and messages were sent to 
V»ef»er»il. v*iIluK*re y^AS Hilton Uead^ to the same effect, with in- 
>;iuct:',';j:* 5o ;i^^5 A >i:v,:Ur uiosj?avre through to Greneral Wilson, 

v»cf*er*C Vv::!c*.5 hiNi brv^r^'^i* '«*ith him, from Washington, 
%"f^;TVtfc jLv*^vcs i^Y/A the ^vrvtarv of War, and of himself, to 
^i^ ^i^mi*mm»akifii^ ^ H» l^th% whidi I still possess, and here 


give the originals. Thej embrace the copy of a dispatch made 
by Mr. Stanton to Gteneral Grant, when he was pressing Lee at 
A.ppomattox, wliich dispatch, if sent me at the same time (as 
should have been done), would have saved a world of trouble. I 
iid not understand that General Grant had come down to su- 
persede me in command, nor did he intimate it, nor did I 
receive these communications as a serious reproof, but promptly 
icted on them, as is already shown ; and in this connection I my answer made to General Grant, at Ealeigh, before I had 
received any answer from General Johnston to the demand for 
the surrender of his own army, as well as my answer to Mr. Stan- 
ton's letter, of the same date, both written on the supposition that 
[ might have to start suddenly in pursuit of Johnston, and have 
QO other chance to explain. 


Wab DEPABTacsin', Washington Citt, April 21, 1865. 
Lteutenant- General Grant. 

GnrxBAx: The memorandum or basis agreed npon between General 
Sherman and General Johnston having been submitted to the President, 
^ej are disapproved. Ton will give notice of the disapproval to Genera] 
Sherman, and direot him to resume hostilities at the earliest moment. 

The instructions given to you bj the late President, Abraham Lincoln, 
m the 8d of March, bj mj telegraph of that date, addressed to you, ex- 
preiB substantially the views of President Andrew Johnson, and will be ob- 
lenred by General Sherman. A copy is herewith appended. 

The President desires that you proceed immediately to the headquarters 
nf Hijor-General Sherman, and direct operations against the euemy. 

Yours truly, 

Edwin M. Stanton, Secretary of War. 

The following telegram wa^ received 2 p. m.. City Point, 
March 4, 1865 (from "Washington, 12 m., March 3, 1865) : 

Officb Uwited States Military Telegraph, ) 


Lieutenant- General Gbant: 

The President directs me to say to you that he wishes you to have no 
sonferenoe with General Lee, unless it he for the capitulation of Lee's army 
ir on solely minor and purely military matters. 

860 BHD OF THE WAB. [18MS. 

Hie iutnieti me to Mjtliatjoa an not to dedde^ diioiui, or ooofSw 
upon anj political qoeitioii; aneh qaaatJona tiie PrtMidflnt liolda inhiaoini 
handsi and will aabmit Uiem to no mifitaiy c onftwnoca or oonTontionfl. 

ICeantinie 70a are to proas to the ntmoat joar ndlitaix adrantagea. . 

Eowtar IL 8iAnov, Aontmry ^ War. 

HsADQCAmw AsHisi or ibb XJinnD StaxbIi 

WAoniOToar, D. a, 4p<I ai, 186fi. '[ 
MaJQ/r-QmrnX W. T. SHsaiCAir, ommumJhi^ JfiKtorrDJeMan rf Oa Jfit- 

Gbhxbal : The bads of agreement entered into betveen joniaelf and 
General J. E. Johnston, for the dishandment of the Soathem annj, and the 
extension of the aathoritj of the Gteneral Government over all the toritorj' 
belonging to it, sent for tiie approval of the President, is received. 

I read it oarefolljr myself before submitting it to the President and Sec- 
retary of War, and felt satisfied that it coidd not poarib^ be appnyved. 
IC7 reason for these views I will give yon at another thne^ in a more ex- 
tended letter. 

Your agreement tonohes upon questions of saoh vital importance tha% aa 
soon as read, I addressed a note to the Secretary of War, no^Qring 1dm of 
their reoeipt| and the importance of immediate action by the Fresidient; 
and suggested, in view of their importance, that the entire Cabinet be 
called together, that all might give an expression of their opinions npon the 
matter. The result was a disapproval by the President of the basis Iiud 
down ; a disapproval of the negotiations altogether— except for the sur- 
render of the army commanded by General Johnston, and directions to me to 
notify you of this decision. I cannot do so better than by sending you the 
inclosed copy of a dispatch (penned by the late President, though signed by 
the Secretary of War) in answer to me, on sending a letter received from 
General Lee, proposing to meet me for the purpose of submitting the ques- 
tion of peace to a convention of officers. 

Please notify General Johnston, immediately on receipt of this, of the 
termination of the truce, and resume hostilities against his army at the ear- 
lieal moment you can, acting in good faith. 

Very respectfullv your obedient servant, 

U. S. Grant, Lieutenant- GeneraL 


ui Yus VucLu, Rjojuau, Nobtb Cabouna, April 25, 1865. | 
Lieutenant- General U. S. Grant, preeent, 

GaxKRAt : 1 had the honor to receive your letter of April Slst, with in- 
elo«unMi vestord^, and was well pleased that yon came aloog^ as yon most 

1865.] END OF THE WAR. 361 

have observed that I held the militarj control so as to adapt it to anj phase 
the case might assume. 

It ia bnt Jost I should record the fact that I made my terms with Gen- 
eral Johnston mider the influence of the liberal terms you extended to the 
armj of General Lee at Appomattox Court-House on the 9th, and the 
seeming policy of our Government, as evinced by the coll of the Virginia 
Legislature and Governor back to Hichmond, under yours and President 
Lincoln's very eyes. 

It now appears this last act was done without any consultation with 
yon or any knowledge of Mr. Lincoln, but rather in opposition to a previous 
policy well considered. 

I have not the least desire to interfere in the civil policy of our Govem- 
ment| bnt would shun it as something not to my liking ; but occasions do 
arise when a prompt seizure of results is forced on military commanders 
not in immediate communication with the proper authority. It is probable 
that the terms signed by General Johnston and myself were not clear 
eaaugb, on the point, well understood between us, that our negotiations did 
not applyto any parties outside the officers and men of the Oonfederato 
armies, which could easily have been remedied. 

Ko surrender of any army not actually at the mercy of an antagonist 
was aver made without ''terms," and these always define the military 
•tatas of the surrendered. Thus you stipulated that the officers and men 
of Lee's army should not be molested at their homes so long as they obeyed 
the laws at the place of their residence. 

I do not wish to discuss these points involved in our recognition of the 
State governments in actual existence, but will merely state my conclusions, 
to await the solution of the future. 

Such action on our part in no manner recognizes for a moment the so- 
called Confederate Government, or makes us liable for its debts or acts. 

The laws and acts done by the several States during the period of re- 
bellion are void, because done without the oath prescribed by our Consti- 
tation of the United States, which is a "condition precedent." 

We have a right to use any sort of machinery to produce military re- 
sults; and it is the commonest thing for military commanders to use the 
civfl governments in actual existence as a means to an end. I do believe 
we could and can use the present State governments lawfully, constitu- 
tionally, and as the very best possible means to produce the object desired, 
viz., entire and complete submission to the lawful authority of the United 

As to punishment for past crimes, that is for the judiciary, and can in no 
manner of way be disturbed by our acts ; and, so far as I can, I will use my 
influence that rebels shall suffer all the personal punishment prescnbed by 
law, as also the civil liabilities arising from their past acts. 




What wo now want is the new form of law by which ooiniDon ^ 
may regain tho positions of indnstry, so long disturbed by the war. 

I now apprehend that the rebel armies will disperse ; and, instead 
dealing with six or seven States, we will have to deal with numberless ba^^^\ 
of desperadoes, headed by such men as Mosby, Forrest, Bed Jackson, 
others, who know not and care not for danger and its consequences. 

I am, with great respect, your obedient servant, 

W. T. SnEBMAN, Major- General commanding. 

IIbadquartebs Miutart Divinov cyr tbx Mnansxpn, ) 
Ui TILE Fi£iJ>, ILlliiqh, Nobth Caboluca, Ajpril S5, 1865. ) 

Hon, E. M. Stanton, Secretary qf War, Waahingtan, 

Deab Sib : I have been furnished a copy of your letter of April 2l8t 
General Grants signifying your disapproval of the terms on which 
Johnston proposed to disarm and disperse the insui^nts, on condition 
amnesty, etc. I admit my folly in embracing in a military oonTention an 
civil matters ; but, unfortunately, such is the nature of our situation tl 
they seem inextricably united, and I understood from you at Savannah thi 
the financial state of the country demanded military success, and woul^ ^ 
warrant a little bending to policy. 

TVhen I had my conference with General Johnston I had the pubUc ex 
amplcs before me of General Grant^s terms to Lee*s army, and Genei 
AVeitzel's invitation to the Virginia Legislature to assemble at Bichmond. 

I still believe tho General Government of the United States has made 
mistake; but that is none of my business — ^mine is a different task; and Haltered niysdf that, by four years of patient, unremitting:, and succej 
ful labor, I (loservcd no reminder such as is contained in the last paragraph 
of Your letter to (ioiieral Grant. You may assure the President that 1 heed 
his suprge.-tion. I am truly, etc., 

W. T. Sherman, Major- General commanding. 

On the same day, Lut later, I received an answer from Gen- 
eral Johnston, aicreeinp^ to meet me again at Bennett's house 
the next day, April 2()tli, at noon. lie did not even know that 
Cleneral Grant was in lialeigh. 

General Grant advised me to meet him, and to accept Lis 
surrender on the same tenns as his with General Lee ; and on 
the 26tli I again went up to Dniham's Station by rail, and rode 
ont to Bennett's house, where we again met, and General Jolin- 
Bton, without hesitation, agreed to, and we executed, the follow- 
ing final terms : 

1865.] END OF THE WAR. 363 

Tenm qfa Military Conventum, entered into thie 26th day of Aprils 1865, 
at Bennetts Jlouse^ near Durham^s Station^ North Carolina^ hetween 
General Joseph E. Johnston, commanding the Confederate Army^ 
and Major 'General W. T. Siiebman, commanding the United States 
Army in North Carolina : 

1. All acts of war on the part of the troops under General Johnston's 
command to cease from this date. 

2. All arms and pablio property to be deposited at Greensboro', and 
deliTered to an ordnance-officer of the United States Arm v. 

8. Bolls of all the officers and men to be made in duplicate ; one copy 
to be retained by the commander of the troops, and the other to be given to 
an officer to be designated by General Sherman. Each officer and man to 
glFO his individual obligation in writing not to take up arms against the 
Goyernment of the United States, until properly released from this obli- 

4. The side-arms of officers, and theu: private horses and baggage, to be 
retained by them. 

6. This being done, all the officers and men will be permitted to return 
to their homes, not to be disturbed by the United States authorities, so long 
as they observe their obligation and the laws in force where they may re- 
Mde. W. T. Shebman, Major- General, 

Commanding United States Forces in North Carolina. 
J. E. Johnston, General, 
Commanding Confederate States Forces in North Carolina, 

Approved: TJ.S.Gbajstt, Zteutenant- General. 

I returned to Kaleigh the same evening, and, at my request, 
Gteneral Grant wrote on these terms his approval, and then I 
thought the matter was surely at an end. He took the original 
copy, on the 27th returned to Newbem, and thence went back to 

I immediately made all the orders necessary to carry into 
effect the terms of this convention, devolving on General Scho- 
field the details of granting the parols and making the muster- 
rolls of prisoners, inventories of property, etc., of General John- 
ston's army at and about Greensboro', North Carolina, and on 
General "Wilson the same duties in Georgia ; but, thus far, I 
had been compelled to communicate with the latter through 
rebel sources, and General TVilson was necessarily confused by 
the conflict of orders and information. I deemed it of the 



innoA imgoraoneg zn -^scuiilm ilir "nhn a snore refiftiife baee oi 
inf ' jduafon xzil sitstjIj^ mil itsgrarifTTrry msoLhred ti> go in peraon 
zt'i SiTTumm ±;r ^^lic pirp:ee. EteL lc£fie« utarfing, I reoared 
a JT^^r f/ri Thnns^ 'it A^rfl t^tjt,. ffifirrsETimg t3^ f oBoning 

An acrsemsxt: for & sasponsiuit 'sf 3k»ESQc&. s&£ s iMBDOExadMB of what is 
naSL&l % ^asis 53r ^q^sus^ sad Veiat flxsKvi qs? ca ^le Iftik Ib^L 1>t General 
gigryniBT. -yio. :ag rsoeiGgnigalJrTtf iwanL. Rncs&ff'OeBenl Breckenzidge 

waa present sc tfte ^ttncSs^ance. 

A 'sbinist sieetfzur witf ^lilii c: <Kjg^ o*«^oc^ m tbe ctcbii^ at which 
the ftctinn of G^nenl was oa^WTrcd Vr Ae ^«Bdeot, hj the 
Sacntary ot "SFir. !« j G^n^nl Grass, azid bj ci gi mfiahfr of the cabiDeL 
G»fiieral ^lernxazL waa orLa^ to resccaa bosdStiBB imTnw!tafd|T, and was 
directed :haL the nxstmctioiis zirai bj tibe lata Pireadeott in the foOowing 
telegram, whinh was penned hj Kr. Iiaeo2n hiHifflf> at tibe GapiU^ o« the 
nl^t cf the 3d "^f ICardL. were approred b j IVgaidffit Andrew Johnson, 
sod were r eiterate d to gorem tlie actioa of nn&tary oofwmaiidfri. 

Oti th^ nf^t yf :h^ 3-i :f ICirdi, while President lincoln and his cab- 
inet tskz^ a- :L-2 Capl: 1. a tcl'r jrizi £^:zi General Grant was brought to the 
Sticr^rCarj of ^or. inf-.rrr.:"^ ''•'•^- tLil Grzeral Leo had re^^nested an inter- 
view or c«:iif^rti:ce. to rr.^^'i aa arraz^ncnt for tenns of peace. The letter 
of Generil Le*? wa» pa':Iiahed vn a letter to Davis and to the rebel Congress. 
General Grant's tcLe^zram was snirzirtcd to iCr. Lincoln, who, after ponder- 
ing a few miz -t^s, took up Lis pen ani wrote with his own hand the lol- 
lowin;? z^l\r, wLi:h he subcitteii to the Secretary of State and Secretary 
of War. It was then dated, addressed, and signed, by the Secretary of 
War. and tdecmphei to General Grant : 

Wa«hi5gt(», Ifarck S, 1S65— 12 p. m. 
Lieutenant- General Gjllst: 

The President directs me to sav to joa that he wishes yon to have no 
conference with General Lee, unless it be for the capitulation of General 
Lee's armv, or on some minor or purelv military matter. He instructs me 
to say that yoti are not to decide, discuss, or confer upon any political 
«iU08tions. Such questions the President holds in his own hands, and will 
Buhinit lliem to no military conferences or conventions. 

Meant imo you are to press to the utmost your military advantages. 

Epwin M. Stantok, Secretary of War. 

865.] END OF THE WAR. 365 

The orders of General Sherman to General Stoneman to withdraw from 
alisbniy and join him will probably open the waj for Davis to escape to 
Uadoo or Europe with his plunder, which is reported to be yery large, in- 
lnding not only the plunder of the Richmond banks, but previous accumu- 

A dispatch received by this department from Richmond says : " It is 
Ated here, by respectable parties, that the amount of specie taken south 
f Jeffl Davis and his partisans is very large, including not only the plunder 
r the Biohmond banks, but previous accumulations. They hope, it is said, 
» make terms with General Sherman, or some other commander, by which 
iitfj will be permitted, with their effects, ineluding this gold plunder, to go 
» Mexico or Europe. Johnston^s negotiations look to this end." 

After the cabinet meeting last night. General Grant started for North 
ardlina, to direct operations against Johnston's army. 

Edwin M. Stanton, Secretary of War, 

Here followed the terms^ and Mr. Stanton's ten reasons for 
sjecting them. 

The publication of this bulletin by authority was an outrage 
Q me, for Mr. Stanton had failed to communicate to me in ad- 
anoe^ as was his duty, the purpose of the Administration to limit 
or negotiations to purely military matters ; but, on the contrary, 
t Sayannah he had authorized me to control all matters, civU 
od military. 

By this bulletin, he implied that I had previously been f ur- 
ished with a copy of his dispatch of March 8d to General 
^laiit, which was not so ; and he gave warrant to the impres- 
lon, which was sown broadcast, that I might be bribed by 
anker's gold to permit Davis to escape. Under the influence 
f this, I wrote General Grant the following letter of April 
Sth, which has been published in the Proceedings of the Com- 
iittee on the Conduct of the War. 

I r^arded this bulletin of Mr. Stanton as a personal and 
ffidal insult, which I afterward publicly resented. 


DT THS FiXLD, BiJJUGH, NoBTB Cabolina, A^nil 28, 1SC5. ) 

Uutenant- General U. S. Gbant, Oeneral-in-CM^j Waehingtan^ D, C. 

GxHXBAi.: Since you left me yesterday, I have seen the Neui York 
{nmi of the 24th, containing a hndget of military news, aaihenticated by 

366 END OF THE WAR. [1865. 

the Bignatore of the Secretary of War, Hon. E. H. Stanton^ which is 
grouped in each a way as to give the public very erroneous impressions. 
It embraces a copy of the basis of agreement between myself and General 
Johnston, of April 18th, with comments, which it will be time enough to 
discuss two or three years hence, aft^r the Government has experimented a 
little more in the machinery by which power reaches the scattered people 
of the vast country known as the " South." 

In the mean time, however, I did think that my rank (if not past ser- 
vices) entitled me at least to trust that the Secretary of War would keep 
secret what was communicated for the use of none but the cabinet, until 
further inquiry could be made, instead of giving publicity to it along 
with documents which I never saw, and drawing therefirom inferences wide 
of the truth. I never saw or had furnished me a copy of President Lin- 
coln's dispatch to you of the 8d of March, nor did Mr. StanUm or any 
human being ever convey to me its substance, or any thing like it. On the 
contrary, I had seen General Weitzel's invitation to the Virginia Legisla- 
ture, made in Mr. Lincoln's very presence, and failed to discover any other 
official hint of a plan of reconstruction, or any ideas calculated to allay the 
fears of the people of the South, after the destruction of their armies and 
civil authorities would leave them without any government whatever. 

We should not drive a people into anarchy, and it is simply impoidble 
for our military power to reach all the masses of their nnbappj country. 

I confess I did not desire to drive General Johnston's army into bsnds 
of armed men, going about without purpose, and capable only of infinite 
miscliief. But you saw, on your arrival here, that I had my army so dis- 
posed that Lis escai)o was only possible in a disorganized shape; and as 
you did not choose to " direct military operations in this quarter," I in- 
I'erred that vou were satisfied with the military situation; at all events, the 
instant I learned wliat was proper enough, the disapproval of the President, 
I acted in such a manner as to compel the surrender of General Johnston's 
whole army on the same terms which you had prescribed to General Lee'a 
aruiv, when you had it surrounded and in your absolute power. 

Mr. Stanton, in stating that my orders to General Stoneman were likely 
to result in the escape of " Mr. Davis to Mexico or Europe," is in deep 
trror. General Stoneman was not at "Salisbury," but had gone back to 
" Statesville." Davis was between us, and therefore Stoneman was beyond 
him. By turning toward me ho was approaching Davis, and, had he joined 
mo as ordered, I would have had a mounted force greatly needed for Davis's 
capture, and for other purposes. Even now I don't know that Mr. Stanton 
wants Davis caught, and as my official papers, deemed sacred, are hastily 
l)ublislied to the world, it will be imprudent for mo to state what has been 
done in that regard. 

As the editor of the Times has (it may be) logically and fairly drawn 

18«5.] END OF THE WAR 367 

from this singular document the conclosion that I am insnbordinate, I can 
only denj the intention. 

I have never in mj life questioned or disobeyed an order, though many 
and many a time have I nsked my life, health, and reputation, in obey- 
ing orders, or even hints to execute plans and purposes, not to my lik- 
ing. It is not fair to withhold from me the plans and policy of Government 
0f any there be), and expect me to guess at them ; for facts and events 
appear quite different from different stand-points. For four years I have 
been in camp dealing with soldiers, and I can assure you that the conclu- 
non at which the cabinet arrived with such singular unanimity differs from 
mine. I conferred freely with the best officers in this army as to the points 
involved in this controversy, and, strange to say, they were singularly unan- 
imous in the other conclusion. They will learn with pain and amaze- 
ment that I am deemed insubordinate, and wanting in common-sense ; 
that I, who for four years have labored day and night, winter and sum- 
mer, who have brought an army of seventy thousand men in magnificent 
condition across a country hitherto deemed impassable, and placed it just 
where it was wanted, on the day appointed, have brought discredit on our 
Govemment I I do not wish to boast of this, but I do say that it en- 
titled me to the courtesy of being consulted, before publishing to the 
world a proposition rightfully submitted to higher authority for a^'udica- 
tion, and then accompanied by statements which invited the dogs of the 
press to be let loose upon me. It is true that non-combatants, men who 
sleep in comfort and security while we watch on the distant lines, are bet- 
ter able to judge than we poor soldiers, who rarely see a newspaper, hardly 
hear from our families, or stop long enough to draw our pay. I envy not 
the task of " reconstruction," and am delighted that the Secretary of War 
has relieved me of it. 

As you did not undertake to assume the management of the affairs of 
this army, I infer that, on personal inspection, your mind arrived at a differ- 
ent conclusion from that of the Secretary of War. I will therefore go on 
to execute your orders to the conclusion, and, when done, will with intense 
satisfaction leave to the civil authorities the execution of the task of which 
they seem so jealous. But, as an honest man and soldier, I invite them to 
go back to Nashville and follow my path, for they will see some things and 
hear some things that may disturb their philosophy. 

With sincere respect, 

W. T. Sherman, Major- General commanding, 

P. S. — ^As Mr. Stanton^s most singular paper has been published, I de- 
mand that this also be made public, though I am in no manner responsible 
to the press, but to the law, and my proper superiors. 

W. T. S., Major- General 

868 END OF THE WAR. [1865. 

On the 28th I summoned all the army and corps command- 
ers together at my quarters in the Governor's mansion' at 
Ealeigh, where every thing was explained to them, and all or- 
ders for the future were completed. Grenerals Schofield, Terry, 
and Kilpatrick, were to remain on duty in the Department of 
North Carolina, abeady commanded by General Schofield, and 
the right and left wings were ordered to march under their re- 
spective commanding generals North by easy stages to Bich- 
mond, Virginia, there to await my return from the South. 

On the 29th of April, with a part of my personal staff, I 
proceeded by rail to Wilmington, North Carolina, where I found 
Generals Hawley and Potter, and the little steamer Bussia, 
Captain Smith, awaiting me. After a short pause in Wilming- 
ton, we embarked, and proceeded down the coast to Port Eoyal 
and the Savannah River, which we reached on the Ist of May. 
There Captain Hosea, who had just come from General Wilson 
at Macon, met us, bearing letters for me and General Grant, in 
which General Wilson gave a brief summary of his operations 
up to date. lie had marched from ^astport, Mississippi, "five 
hundred miles in thirty days, took six thousand three hundred 
prisoners, twenty-three colors, and one hundred and fifty-six 
guns, defeating rorrest, scattering the militia, and destroying 
everj'- railroad, iron establishment, and factorj^, in North Ala- 
bama and Georgia." 

lie 6j)oke in the highest terms of his cavalry, as " cavalry," 
claiming that it could not be excelled^ and he regarded his 
corps as a model for modern cavalry in organization, armament, 
and discipline. Its strength was given at thirteen thousand five 
hundred men and horses on reaching Macon. Of course I was 
extremely gratified at his just confidence, and saw that all he 
wanted for efficient action was a sure base of supply, so that he 
need no longer depend for clothing, ammunition, food, and 
forage, on the country, which, now that war had ceased, it was 
our solemn duty to protect, instead of plunder. I accordingly 
ordered the captured steamer Jeff. Davis to be loaded with 
stores, to proceed at once up the Savannah River to Augusta, 
with a small detachment of troo])s to occupy the arsenal, and tn 

1865.] END OF THE WAR. 369 

open commTmication with Geoeral Wilson at Macon ; and on 
the next day, May 2d, this steamer was followed by another 
with a fall cargo of clothing, sugar, cofEee, and bread, sent from 
Emton Head by the department commander. General Gillmore, 
with a stronger gnard commanded by General Molineux. 
Leaving to General Gillmore, who was present, and in whose 
department General Wilson was, to keep up the supplies at 
Augusta, and to facilitate as far as possible General Wilson's 
operations inland, I began my return on the 2d of May. We 
went into Charleston Harbor, passing the ruins of old Forts 
Moultrie and Sumter without landing. We reached the city 
of Charleston, which was held by part of the division of Gen- 
eral John F. Hatch, the same that we had left at Focotaligo. 
We walked the old familiar streets — ^Broad, King, Meeting, etc. 
— but desolation and ruin were everywhere. The heart of the 
city had been burned during the bombardment, and the rebel 
garrison at the time of its final evacuation had fired the rail- 
road-depots, which fire had spread, and was only subdued by 
our troops after they had reached the city. 

I inquired for many of my old friends, but they were dead 
or gone, and of them all I only saw a part of the family of 
Mrs. Fettigru. I doubt whether any city was ever more ter- 
ribly punished than Charleston, but, as her people had for years 
been agitating for war and discord, and had finally inaugurated 
the civil war by an attack on the small and devoted garrison of 
Major Anderson, sent there by the General Government to de- 
fend them, the judgment of the world will be, that Charleston 
deserved the fate that befell her. Eesuming our voyage, wo 
passed into Cape Fear Eiver by its mouth at Fort Caswell and 
SmithviUe, and out by the new channel at Fort Fisher, and 
reached Morehead City on the 4th of May. We found there the 
revenuoHJutter Wayanda, on board of which were the Chief- 
Justice, Mr. Chase, and his daughter Nettie, now Mrs. Hoyt. 
The Chief-Justice at that moment was absent on a visit to New- 
beruy but came back the next day. Meantime, by means of the 
telegraph, I was again in correspondence with G^oieral Schofiejd 
atBalei^. He had made great progress in parolling the:Offi- 

870 ENI> ^F THE WAR [1865. 

cers and men of Johnston's army at Greensboro', but was em- 
barrassed by the ntter confusion and anarchy that had resulted 
from a want of understanding on many minor points, and on 
the political questions that had to be met at the instant. In 
order to facilitate the return to their homes of the Confederate 
officers and men, he had been forced to make with General 
Johnston the following supplemental terms, which were of 
eourse ratified and approved : 



1. The field transportation to be loaned to the troops for thdr inarch to 
their homes, and for subsequent use in their industrial pursuits. Artilkry- 
horses may be used in field-transportation, if necessary. 

2. Each brigade or separate body to retain a number of arms equal to 
OM-Meventh of its effective strength, which, when the troops readi the 
capitals of their States, will be disposed of as the general oommanding the 
department may direct. 

8. Private horses, and other private property of both officers and meOf 
to be retained by them. 

4. The commanding general of the Military Division of West Ifisflissippi, 
M^or-General Oanby, will be requested to give transportation by water, 
from Mobile or New Orleans, to the troops from Arkansas and Texas. 

5. The obligations of officers and soldiers to be signed by their imme- 
diate commanders. 

6. Naval forces within the limits of General Johnston^s command to be 
included in the terms of this convention. 

J. M. SonoFiELD, Major- General^ 
Commanding United States Forces in North CaroIwL 
J. E. JomrsTON, General, 
Commanding Coi\federate States For€4S in North Carolina. 

The total number of prisoners of war paroUed by General Scho- 
field, at Greensboro', North Carolina, as afterward officially 
reported, amounted to 86,817 

And the total number who surrendered in Georgia and Florida, as 

reported by General J. n. Wilson, was 52,453 

Aggregate surrendered under the capitulation of General 
J. E. Johnston 89,270 

Un tlie morning of tlie 5th I also received from General 
Schofield this dispatch : 

1865J END OF THE WAR. 371 

RALSian, NoBTn Cabouna, 2iay 5, 18G5. 
To Mdjor-CUneral W. T, Shebman, Morehead City : 

When General Grant was here, as you doubtless recollect, he said the 
lines (for trade and intercoarse) had been extended to embrace this and 
oUier States soath. The order, it seems, has been modified so as to include 
only Virginia and Tennessee. I think it would be an act of wisdom to open 
this State to trade at once. 

I hope the Government will make known its policy as to the organs 
of State government without delay. Affairs must necessarily be in a very 
unsettled state until that is done. The people are now in a mood to accept 
almost anything which promises a definite settlement. *^ What is to be done 
with the freedmen?*' is the question of oil, and it is the all-important ques- 
tion. It requires prompt and wise action to prevent the negroes from be- 
coming a huge elephant on our hands. If I am to govern this State, it is 
important for me to know it at once. If another is to be sent here, it can- 
not be done too soon, for he probably will undo the most that I shall have 
done. I shall be glad to hear from you fully, when you have time to write. 
I will send your message to General Wilson at once. 

J. M. SonoFiELD, Major- General. 

I was utterly without instructions from any source on the 
points of General Schofleld's inquiry, and under the existing 
state of facts could not even advise him, for by this time I was 
in possession of the second bulletin of Mr. Stanton, published 
in all the Northern papers, with comments that assumed that I 
was a common traitor and a public enemy ; and high officials 
had even instructed my own subordinates to disobey my lawful 
orders. Greneral Halleck, who had so long been in Washington 
as the chief of staff, had been sent on the 21st of April to 
lUchmond, to command the armies of the Potomac and James, 
in place of General Grant, who had transferred his headquarters 
to the national capital, and he (General Halleck) was therefore 
in supreme conmiand in Virginia, while my command over 
Xorih Carolina had never been revoked or modified. 

[Second BoUetlD.] 

Wab Departicent, WAflHiNOTON, AfHl 27—9.30 a. m. 
7b Me^or-General Dix : • 

The department has received the following dispatch from Migor-Gen- 
«nl Halleck, commanding the Military Division of the James. Generals 

872 END OF THE WAR. [1865. 

Canbj and Thomas were instracted some dajs ago that Sherman's arrange- 
ments with Johnston were disapproved by the President, and they were 
ordered to disregard it and pnsh the enemy in every direction. 

K M. Stakton, Secretary of War, 

BioHXOin), YxBODriA, April 26 — 9.80 p. ic 

£[on. E. M. Stanton, Secretary of War: 

Generals Meade, Sheridan, and Wright, are acting under orders to pay 
no regard to any truce or orders of General Sherman respecting hostilities, 
on the gronnd that Sherman's agreement could bind his command only, 
and no other. 

They are directed to push forward, regardless of orders from any one 
except from General Grant, and cut off Johnston's retreat. 

Beauregard has telegraphed to Danville that a new arrangement has 
been made with Sherman, and that the advance of the Sixth Oorps was to 
be suspended until frirther orders. 

I have telegraphed back to obey no orders of Sherman, but to push for- 
ward as rapidly as possible. 

The bankers here have information to-day that Jeff. Davis's specie is 
moving south from Goldsboro', in wagons, as fast as possible. 

I suggest that orders be telegraphed, through General Thomas, that 
Wilson obey no orders from Sherman, and notifying him and Oanby, and 
all commanders on the Mississippi, to take measures to intercept the rebel 
chiefs and their plunder. 

The specie taken with them is estimated here at from six to thirteen 
million dollars. 

H. W. Hallkok, Major- General commanding. 

Subsequently, before tbe Committee on the Conduct of the 
"War, in Washington, on the 22d of May, I testified fully on this 
whole matter, and will abide the judgment of the country on 
the patriotism and wisdom of my public conduct in this connec- 
tion. General Halleck's measures to capture Gteneral Johnston's 
army, actuaDy surrendered to me at the time, at Greensboro', on 
the 26th of April, simply excited my contempt for a judgment 
such as he was supposed to possess. The assertion that JefiL 
Davis's specie-train, of six to thirteen million dollars, was re- 
ported to be moving* south from Goldsboro' in wagons as fast as 
possible, found plenty of willing ean^ though my army of eighty 
thousand men had been at Goldsboro' from March 22d to the 
date of his dispatch, April 26th ; and such a train would have 

1865.] ?an) OF .THE WAR. 373 

been composed of from fifteen to thirty-two six-mule teams to 
have hauled this specie, even if it all were in gold. I suppose 
the exact amount of treasure which Davis had with him is now 
known to a cent ; some of it was paid to his escort, when it dis- 
banded at and near Washington, Greorgia, and at the time of his 
capture he had a small parcel of gold and silver coin, not to ex- 
ceed ten thousand dollars, which is now retained in the United 
States Treasury-vault at Washington, and shown to the curious. 

The thirteen millions of treasure, with which JeflE. Davis was 
to corrupt our armies and buy his escape, dwindled down to the 
contents of a hand-valise ! 

To say that I was merely angry at the tone and substance of 
these published bulletins of the War Department, would hardly 
express the state of my feelings. I was outraged beyond meas- 
ure, and was resolved to resent the insult, cost what it might. I 
went to the Wayanda and showed them to Mr. Chase, with whom 
I had a long and frank conversation, during which he explained 
to me the confusion caused in Washington by the assassination 
of Mr. Lincoln, the sudden accession to power of Mr. Johnson, 
who was then supposed to be bitter and vindictive in his feel- 
ings toward the South, and the wild pressure of every class of 
politicians to enforce on the new President their pet schemes. 
He showed me a letter of his own, which was in print, dated 
Baltimore, April 11th, and another of April 12th, addressed to 
the President, urging him to recognize the freedmen as equal in 
all respects to the whites. He was the first man, of any authori- 
ty or station, who ever informed me that the Government of the 
United States would insist on extending to the former slaves of 
the South the elective franchise, and he gave as a reason the 
fact that the slaves, grateful for their freedom, for which they 
ware indebted to the armies and Government of the North, 
would, by their votes, offset the disaffected and rebel element of 
the white population of the South. At that time quite a storm 
was prevailing at sea, outside, and our two vessels lay snug at the 
wharf at Morehead City. I saw a good deal of Mr. Chase, and 
several notes passed between us, of which I have the originals 
yet Always claiming that the South had herself freed all her 

374 END OF THE WAR. [1865. 

slaves by rebelHoiij and that Mr. lincobi's proclamation of free- 
dom (of September 22, 1862) was binding on all oflSeers of the 
General Government, I doubted the wisdom of at once clothing 
them with the elective franchise, without some previous prepara- 
tion and qualification ; and then realized the national loss in the 
death at that critical moment of Mr. Lincoln, who had long 
pondered over the diflScult questions involved, who, at all 
events, would have been honest and frank, and would not have 
withheld from his army commanders at least a hint that would 
have been to them a guide. It was plain to me, therefore, that 
the manner of his assassination had stampeded the civil authori- 
ties in Washington, had xmnerved them, and that they were then 
undecided as to the measures indispensably necessary to prevent 
anarchy at the South. 

On the 7th of May the storm subsided, and we put to sea, 
Mr. Chase to the south, on his proposed tour as far as New 
Orleans, and I for James Eiver. I reached Fortress Monroe on 
the 8th, and thence telegraphed my arrival to General Grant, 
asking for orders. I found at Fortress Monroe a dispatch from 
General Ilalleck, professing great friendship, and inviting me 
to accept his hospitality at Kichmond. I answered by a cipher- 
dispatch that I had seen his dispatch to Mr. Stanton, of April 
26th, embraced in the second bulletin, which I regarded as in- 
sulthig, declined his hospitality, and added that I preferred 
we should not meet as I passed through Kichmond. I thence 
proceeded to City Point in the Russia, and on to Manchester, 
opposite Kichmond, via Petersburg, by rail. I found that both 
wings of the army had arrived from Kaleigh, and were in camp 
in and around Manchester, whence I again telegraphed General 
Grant, on the 9th of May, for orders, and also reported my arri- 
val to General Halleck by letter. I found that General Halleck 
had ordered General Davis's coi'ps (the Fourteenth) for review 
by himself. This I forbade. All the army knew of the insult 
that had been made me by the Secretary of War and General 
Halleck, and watched me closely to see if I would tamely sub- 
mit. During the 9th I made a full and complete report of all 
these events, from the last report made at Goldsboro' up to 

1865.J END OF THE WAR. 375 

date, and tlie next day received orders to continue the march 
to Alexandria, near Washington. 

On the morning of the 11th we crossed the pontoon-bridge 
at Sichmond, marched through that city, and out on the Han- 
over Court-House road. General Slocimi's left wing leading. 
The right wing (General Logan) followed the next day, viz., 
the 12th. Meantime, General O. O. Howard had been sum- 
moned to "Washington to take charge of the new Bureau of 
Befugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, and, from that time 
till the army was finally disbanded, General John A. Logan 
was in command of the right wing, and of the Army of the 
Tennessee. The left wing marched through Hanover Court- 
House, and thence took roads well to the left by Chilesburg ; the 
Fourteenth Corps by New Market and Culpepper, Manassas, etc. ; 
the Twentieth Corps by Spotsylvania Court-House and Chan- 
cellorsville. The right wing followed the more direct road by 
Fredericksburg. On my way north I endeaypred to see as much 
of the battle-fields of the Army of the Potomac as I could, and 
therefore shifted from one column to the other, visiting en route 
Hanover Court-House, Spotsylvania, Fredericksburg, Dumfries, 
etc,, reaching Alexandria during the afternoon of May 19th, 
and pitched my camp by the road-side, about half-way between 
Alexandria and the Long Bridge. During the same and next 
day the whole army reached Alexandria, and camped roxmd about 
it; General Meade's Army of the Potomac had possession of the 
camps above, opposite Washington and Georgetown. 

The next day (by invitation) I went over to Washington 
and met many friends — ^among them General Grant and Presi- 
dent Johnson. The latter occupied rooms in the house on the 
comer of Fifteenth and H Streets, belonging to Mr. Hooper. 
He was extremely cordial to me, and knowing that I was chafing 
under the censures of the War Department, especially of the 
two war bulletins of Mr. Stanton, he volunteered to say that he 
knew of neither of them till seen in the newspapers, and that 
Mr. Stanton had shown neither to him nor to any of his asso- 
ciates in the cabinet till they were published. Nearly all the 
members of the cabinet made similar assurances to me after- 

376 END OF THE WAR. [1855. 

ward, and, as Mr. Stanton made no friendly advances, and offered 
no word of explanation or apology, I declined General Grant's 
friendly offices for a reconciliation, but, on the contrary, resolved 
to resent what I considered an insult, as publicly as it was made. 
My brother. Senator Sherman, who was Mr. Stanton's neighbor, 
always insisted that Mr. Stanton had been frightened by the 
intended assassination of himself, and had become embittered 
thereby. At all events, I f oxmd strong military guards around 
his house, as well as all the houses occupied by the cabinet and 
by the principal officers of Government ; and a sense of insecurity 
pervaded "Washington, for which no reason existed. 

On the 19th I received a copy of War Department Special 
Order No. 239, Adjutant-General's office, of May 18th, ordering 
a grand review, by the President and cabinet, of all the armies 
then near Washington ; General Meade's to occur on Tuesday, 
May 23d, mine on Wednesday, the 24th ; and on the 20th I 
made the necessary orders for my part. Meantime I had also 
arranged (with General Grant's approval) to remove, after the 
review, my armies from the south side of the Potomac to the 
north ; both for convenience and because our men had found 
that the grounds assigned them had been used so long for camps 
that they were foul and unfit. 

By invitation I was on the reviewing-stand, and witnessed 
the review of the Army of the Potomac (on the 23d), com- 
manded by General Meade in pereon. The day was beautiful, 
and the pageant was superb. Washington was full of strangers, 
who filled the streets in holiday-dress, and every house was dec- 
orated with flags. The army marched by di\dsions in close col- 
umn around the Capitol, down Pennsylvania Avenue, past the 
President and cabinet, who occupied a large stand prepared for 
the occasion, directly in front of the White House. 

I had telegraphed to Lancaster for Mrs. Sherman, who ar- 
rived that day, accompanied by her father, the Hon. Thomas 
Ewing, and my son Tom, then eight years old. 

During the afternoon and night of the 23d, the Fifteenth, 
Seventeenth, and Twentieth Corps, crossed Long Bridge, 
bivouacked in the streets about the Capitol, and th^ Fourteenth 

1W5.] END OP THE WAR. 377 

Corps dosed up to the bridge. The morning of the 24th was 
extremely beautiful, and the ground was in splendid order for 
our review. The streets were filled with people to see the 
pageant, armed with bouquets of flowers for their favorite regi- 
ments or heroes, and every thing was propitious. Punctually 
at 9 A. M. the signal-gun was fired, when in person, attended by 
G^end Howard and all my staff, I rode slowly down Pennsyl- 
vania Avenue, the crowds of men, women, and children, densely 
lining the sidewalks, and almost obstructing the way. We were 
followed close by General Logan and the head of the Fifteenth 
Corps. When I reached the Treasury-building, and looted back, 
the sight was simply magnificent. The column was compact, 
and the glittering muskets looked like a solid mass of steel, 
moving with the regularity of a pendulum. We passed the 
Treasuiy-building, in front of which and of the White House 
was an immense throng of people, for whom extensive stands 
had been prepared on both sides of the avenue. As I neared 
the brick-liouse opposite the lower comer of Lafayette Square, 
some one asked me to notice Mr. Seward, who, still feeble and 
bandaged for his woxmds, had been removed there that ho 
might behold the troops. I moved in that direction and took 
off my hat to Mr. Seward, who sat at an upper window. Ho 
recognized the salute, returned it, and then we rode on stead- 
ily past the President, saluting with our swords. All on his 
stand arose and acknowledged the salute. Then, turning into 
the gate of the presidential grounds, we left our horses with 
orderlies, and went upon the stand, where I found Mrs. Sher- 
man, with her father and son. Passing them, I shook hands 
with the President, General Grant, and each member of the 
cabinet. As I approached Mr. Stanton, he offered me his hand, 
but I declined it publicly, and the fact was universally noticed. 
I then took my post on the left of the President, and for six 
hours and a half stood, while the army passed in the order of 
the Fifteenth, Seventeenth, Twentieth, and Fourteenth Corps. 
It was, in my judgment, the most magnificent army in existence 
— sixty-five thousand men, in splendid j>hy8iqu€^ who had just 
completed a march of nearly two thousand miles in a hostile coun- 

878 END OF THE WAR. [1885. 

try, in good drill, and who realized that they were being closely 
eeratinized by thousands of their fellowH2oiintrymen and by for- 
eigaerg. Division after division passed, each commander of an 
army corps or division coming on the stand during the passage 
of his command, to be presented to the President, cabinet, and 
spectators. The steadiness and firmness of the tread, the earef nl 
dress on the guides, the nniform intervals between the com- 
panies, all eye3 directly to the front, and the tattered and bullet- 
riven flagSj festooned with flowers, all attracted universal notice. 
Many good people, up to that time, had looked upon our West- 
em army as a sort of mob ; but the world then saw, and recog- 
nized the fact, that it was an army in the proper sense, well 
organized, well commanded and disciplined ; and tbere waa 
no wonder that it had swept tbrongh the South like a tor- 
nado. For six hours and a half that strong tread of the Army 
of the West resounded along Pennsylvania Avenue ; not a soul 
of that vast crowd of spectators left his place ; and, when the 
rear of the column had passed by, thousands of the spectators 
still lingered to express their sense of confidence in the strength 
of a Government which conld claim such an army. 

Some littlo scenes enlivened the day, and called for the 
laughter and cheers of the crowd. Each division was followed 
by six ambulances, as a representative of its baggage -train. 
Some of the division commanders had added, by way of variety, 
goats, milch-cows, and pack-mules, whose loads consisted of 
game-cocks, poultry, hams, etc., and some of them had the 
families of freed slaves along, with the women leading their 
children. Each division was preceded by its corps of black 
pioneers, armed with picks and spades. These marched abreast 
in doable ranks, keeping perfect dress and step, and added much 
to the interest of the occasion. On the whole, the grand review 
was a splendid success, and was a fitting conclusion to the cam- 
paign and the war. 

I will now conclude by a copy of my general orders taking 
leave of the army, which ended my connection with the war, 
though I afterward visited and took a more formal leave of the 
officers and men on July 4, 1865, at Louisville, Kentucky : 

18e5.] END OF THE WAR. 879 

ISpMial Field Ordert, STa T6.J 


Off THX Field, WiuranraTON, I>. C, Mc^ 80, 18C5. f 

The general commanding announces to the Armies of the Tennessee and 
Georgia that the time has come for ns to part. Our work is done, and armed 
enemies no longer defy ns. 8ome of yon will go to your homes, and others 
will be retained in military servioe till further orders. 

And now that we are all about to separate, to mingle with the civil world, 
it becomes a pleasing duty to recall to mind the situation of national affairs 
when, but little more than a year ago, we were gathered about the clitfs 
of Lookout Mountain, and all the future was wrapped in doubt and uncer- 

Three armies had come together from distant fields, with separate his- 
tories, yet bound by one common cause — the union of our country, and the 
perpetuation of the Government of our inheritance. There is no need to 
recall to your memories Tunnel Hill, with Rocky-Face Mountain and Buz- 
zard-Roost Gap, and the ugly forts of Dalton behind. 

We were in earnest, and paused not for danger and difficulty, but dashed 
through Snake-Greek Gap and fell on Resaca ; then on to the Etowah, to 
Dallas, Kenesaw ; and the heats of summer found us on the banks of the 
Chattahoochee, far from home, and dependent on a single road for supplies. 
Again we were not to be held back by any obstacle, and crossed over and 
fought four hard battles for the possession of the citadel of Atlanta. That 
was the crisis of our history. A doubt still clouded our futnre, but we 
solved the problem, destroyed Atlanta, struck boldly across the State of 
Georgia, severed all the main arteries of life to our enemy, and Clirist- 
mas found us at Savannah. 

Waiting there only long enough to fill our wagons, we again began a 
march which, for peril, labor, and results, will compare with any ever made 
by an organized army. The floods of the Savannah, the swamps of the 
Combahee and Edisto, the " high hills " and rocks of the Santee, the fiat 
quagmires of the Pedee and Cape Fear Rivers, were all passed in mid- 
winter, with its floods and rains, in the face of an accumulating enemy ; 
and, after the battles of Averysboro' and Bentonsville, we once more came 
out of the wilderness, to meet our friends at Goldsboro\ Even then we 
paused only long enough to get new clothing, to reload our wagons, again 
pushed on to Raleigh and beyond, until we met our enemy suing for 
peace, instead of war, and offering to submit to the injured laws of his and 
our country. As long as that enemy was defiant, nor mountains nor rivers, 
nor swamps, nor hunger, nor cold, had checked us ; but when he, who had 
fought us hard and persistently, offered submission, yoi\r general thought it 
wrong to pursue him farther, and negotiations followed, which resulted, as 
70a all know, in his surrender. 

How far the operations of this army contributed to the final overthrow 




of the Confederacy and the peace* which now dawns npon ns, mnst be 
judged hj others, not by us ; but that you have done all that men could do 
has been admitted by those in authority, and we have a right to join in the 
universal joy that fills our land because the war Is over, and our Government 
stands vindicated before the world by the joint action of the volunteer 
armies and navy of the United States. 

To such as remain in the service, your general need only remind you 
that success in the past was due to hard work and discipline, and that the 
same work and discipline are equally important in the future. To such as 
go home, he will only say that our favored country is so grand, so extensive, 
so diversified in climate, soil, and productions, that every man may find a 
home and occupation suited to his taste ; none should yield to the nat- 
ural impatience sure to result from our past life of excitement and advent- 
ure. You will be invited to seek new adventures abroad; do not yield 
to the temptation, for it will lead only to death and disappointment. 

Your .general now bids you farewell, with the full belief that, as in war 
you have been good soldiers, so in peace you will make good citizens ; and 
if, unfortunately, new war should arise in our country, " Sherman's army *' 
will be the first to buckle on its old armor, and come forth to defend and 
maintain the Government of our inheritance. 

By order of M^jor-General W. T. Sherman, 

L. M. Datton, AisUtant Adjutant- General, 

List of the Average Number of Miles vnarched 'by the Different Army C&rpe 
of the United States Forces under Command of Major- General W. T. 
Sherman, United States Army, during his Campaigns in 1863- 64-'65. 


From Vldjaburg to Merldlun, and back. . . 

From Memphis to Chattanoopa 

From Chattanoopra to KnoxviUe, and back 
From Chattanoogu to Huntsville (Paint 

Rock). Langston, etc^ and back 

From Clifton to Home 

From Chattanoo^ to. Atlanta (average 

distance traversed In manoeavring) .... 
Pursuit of Hood, and back to Atlanta. . . . 

From Atlanta to Savannah 

From Savannah to Ooldsboro' 

From Goldsboro' to Washington, Di 0... . 

Total distance in miles. 

KUVBKB or inus. 

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Compiled from campaign maps at headquarters Military Division of the 
Uississippi, St. Louis, Missouri. "William Kossack, Captain, 

Additional Aide-de-Camp on Engineer Duty, 



Hayino thus recorded a summary of events, mostly under 
my own personal supervision, during the years from 1846 to 
1865, it seems proper that I should add an opinion of some of 
the useful military lessons to be derived therefrom. 

That civil war, by reason of the existence of slavery, was 
apprehended by most of the leading statesmen of the half -cen- 
tury preceding its outbreak, is a matter of notoriety. General 
Soott told me on my arrivd at New York, as early as 1850, that 
the country was on the eve of civil war ; and the Southern poli- 
ticians openly asserted that it was their purpose to accept as a 
casus IdU the election of General Fremont in 1856 ; but, fortu- 
nately or unfortunately, he was beaten by Mr. Buchanan, which 
simply postponed its occurrence for four years. Mr. Seward 
had also publicly declared that no government could possibly 
exist half slave and half free ; yet the Gt>vemment made no 
military preparation, and the Northern people generally paid 
no attention, took no warning of its coming, and would not 
realize its existence till Fort Sumter was fired on by batteries of 
artillery, handled by declared enemies, from the surrounding 
islands and from the city of Charleston. 

General Bragg, who certainly was a man of intelligence, and 
who, in early life, ridiculed a thousand times, in my hearing, the 
threats of the people of South Carolina to secede from the Fed- 
eral Union, said to me in New Orleans, in February, 1861, that 
he was coiivinced that the feeling between the slave and free 
States had become so embittered that it was better to part in 


peace; better to part anyhow; and, as a separation was in- 
evitable, that the Sonth should begin at once, because the possi- 
bility of a successful effort was yearly lessened by the rapid and 
increasing inequality between the two sections, from the fact 
that aU the European immigrants were coming to the Northern 
States and Territories, and none to the Southern. 

The slave population m 1860 was near four millions, and 
the money value thereof not far from twenty-five hundred mill- 
ion dollars. Now, ignoring the moral side of the question, a 
cause that endangered so vast a moneyed interest was an ade- 
quate cause of anxiety and preparation, and the Northern lead- 
ers surely ought to have foreseen the danger and prepared for 
it. After the election of Mr. Lincoln in 1860, there was no 
concealment of the declaration and preparation for war in the 
South. In Louisiana, as I have related, men were openly en- 
listed, officers were appointed, and war was actually begun, in 
January, 1861. The forts at the mouth of the Mississippi were 
seized, and occupied by garrisons that hauled down the United 
States flag and hoisted that of the State. The United States 
Arsenal at Baton Rouge was captured by New Orleans militia, 
its garrison ignominiously sent off, and the contents of the 
arsenal distributed. These were as much acts of war as was the 
subsequent firing on Fort Sumter, yet no public notice was 
taken thereof ; and when, months afterward, I came North, I 
found not one single sign of preparation. It was for this reason, 
somewhat, tliat the people of the South became convinced that 
those of the North were pusillanimous and cowardly, and the 
Southern leaders were thereby enabled to commit their people 
to the war, nominally in defense of their slave property. Up 
to the hour of the firing on Fort Sumter, in April, 1861, it does 
seem to me that our public men, our politicians, were blamable 
for not sounding the note of alarm. 

Then, when war was actually begun, it was by a call for 
seventy-five thousand " ninety-day " men, I suppose to fulfill 
Mr. Seward's prophecy that the war would last but ninety days. 

The earlier steps by our political Government were extremely 
wavering and weak, for which an excuse can be found in the 


fact that many of the Sonthem representatives remained in 
Congress, sharing in the public councils, and influencing legisla- 
tion. But as soon as Mr. Lincoln was installed, there was no 
longer any reason why Congress and the cabinet should have 
hesitated. They should have measured the cause, provided the 
means, and left the Executive to apply the remedy. 

At the time of Mr. Lincoln's inauguration, viz., March 4, 
1861, the Regidar Army, by law, consisted of two regiments of 
dragoons, two regiments of cavalry, one regiment of mounted 
rifles, four regiments of artillery, and ten regiments of infan- 
try, admitting of an aggregate strength of tliirteen thousand 
and twenty-four officers and men. On the subsequent 4th of 
May the President, by his own orders (afterward sanctioned by 
Congress), added a regiment of cavalry, a regiment of artillerj', 
and eight regiments of infantry, which, with the former anny, 
admitted of a strength of thirty-nine thousand nine hundred 
and seventy-three ; but at no time during the war did the Eegu- 
lar Army attain a strength of twenty-five thousand men. 

To the new regiments of infantry was given an organization 
difl!ering from any that had heretofore prevailed in this country 
— of three battalions of eight companies each ; but at no time 
did more than one of these regiments attain its full standard ; 
nor in the vast army of volunteers that was raised during the 
war were any of the regiments of infantry formed on the three- 
battalion system, but these were universally single battalions of 
ten companies ; so that, on the reorganization of the Begular 
Army at the dose of the war. Congress adopted the form of 
twelve companies for the regiments of cavalry and artillery, and 
that of ten companies for the infantry, which is the present 

Inasmuch as the Regular Army will naturally form the 
standard of organization for any increase or for new regiments 
of volunteers, it becomes important to study this subject in the 
li^t of past experience, and to select that form which is best 
for peace as well as war. 

A cavalry regiment is now composed of twelve companies, 
usnally divided into six squadrons, of two companies each, or 


better subdivided into three battalions of fonr companies each. 
This is an excellent form, easily admitting of subdivision as well 
as union into larger masses. 

A single battalion of four companies, with a field-oflScer, 
will compose a good body for a garrison, for a separate expe- 
dition, or for a detachment ; and, in war, three regiments would 
compose a good brigade, three brigades a division, and three 
divisions a strong cavalry corps, such as was formed and fought 
by Generals Sheridan and Wilson during the war. 

In the artillery arm, the officers differ widely in their opinion 
of the true organization. A single company forms a battery, 
and habitually each battery acts separately, though sometimes 
several are united or ^^ massed ; " but these always act in concert 

Nevertheless, the regimental organization for artillery has 
always been maintained in this country for classification and 
promotion. Twelve companies compose a regiment, and, though 
probably no colonel ever commanded his full regiment in the 
form of twelve batteries, yet in peace they occupy our heavy 
sea-coast forts or act as infantry ; then the regimental organiza- 
tion is both necessary and convenient. 

But the infantry composes the great mass of all armies, and 
the true form of the regiment or unit has been the subject of 
infinite discussion ; and, as I have stated, during the civil war 
the regiment was a single battalion of ten companies. In olden 
times the regiment was composed of eight battalion companies 
and two flank companies. The first and tenth companies were 
armed with rifles, and were styled and used as " skirmishers ; " 
but during the war they were never used exclusively for that 
special purpose, and in fact no distinction existed between them 
and the other eight companies. 

The ten-company organization is awkward in practice, and I 
am satisfied that the infantry regiment should have the same 
identical organization as exists for the cavalry and artillery, viz., 
twelve companies, so as to be susceptible of division into three 
battalions of four companies each. 

These companies should habitually be about one hundred 


men strong, giving twelve hundred to a regiment, wliicli in 
practice would settle down to about one thousand men. 

Three such regiments would compose a brigade, three bri- 
gades a division, and three divisions a corps. Then, by allowing 
to an infantry corps a brigade of cavalry and six batteries of 
field-artillery, we would have an efficient corpa cParmee of thirty 
thousand men, whose organization would be simple and most 
efficient, and whose strength should never be allowed to fall 
below twenty-five thousand men. 

The corps is the true unit for grand campaigns and battle, 
should have a full and perfect staff, and every thing requi- 
site for separate action, ready at all times to be detached and 
sent off for any nature of service. The general in command 
should have the rank of lieutenant-general, and should be, by 
experience and education, equal to any thing in war. Habitually 
with us he was a major-general, specially selected and assigned 
to the command by an order of the President, constituting, in 
fact, a separate grade. 

The division is the unit of administration, and is the legiti- 
mate command of a major-general. 

The brigade is the next subdivision, and is commanded by a 

The regiment is the family. The colonel, as the father, 
should have a personal acquaintance with every officer and man, 
and should instill a feeling of pride and affection for himself, so 
that his officers and men would naturally look to him for per- 
sonal advice and instruction. In war the regiment should never 
be subdivided, but should always be maintained entire. In 
peace this is impossible. 

The company is the true unit of discipline, and the captain 
18 the company. A good captain makes a good company, and 
he should have'the power to reward as well as punish. The fact 
that soldiers would naturally like to have a good fellow for their 
captain is the best reason why he should be appointed by the 
colonel, or by some superior authority, instead of being elected 
by the men. 

In the United States the people are the "sovereign," all 

886 lOLITABY LESSONB OF THE WAB. [1861-'65. 

power originallj proceeds from them, and therefore the election 
of officers by the men is the common rule. This is wrong, be- 
cause an army is not a popnlar oiganization, but an animated 
machine, an instroment in the hands of the Ezecntive for en- 
forcing the law, and maintaining the honor and dignify of the 
nation ; and the President, as the constitutional commimder-in- 
chief of the army and na^y, should exercise the power of ap- 
pointmmt (sabject to the confirmation of the Senate) of the 
officers of '^ volunteers," as well as of ^' regulars." 

Ko army can be efficient unless it be a unit for action ; and 
the power must come from above, not from below : the Presi- 
dent usually delegates his power to the commander-in-chie^ 
and be to tibe next, and so on down to the lowest actual oomr 
mander of troops, however small the detachment. Ko matter 
bow troops come together, when once united, the highest officer 
in rank is beld responsible, and should be consequently armed 
with the fullest power of the Executive, subject oi^y to law and 
existing orders. The more simple the principle, the greater the 
likelihood of determined action ; and the less a commanding 
officer is circumscribed by bounds or by precedent, the greater 
is the probability that he will make the best use of his command 
and achieve the best results. 

The Eegular Army and the Military Academy at West Point 
liave in the past provided, and doubtless will in the future pro- 
vide an ample supply of good officers for future wars ; but, should 
their numbers be insufficient, we can always safely rely on the 
great number of young men of education and force of character 
throughout the country, to supplement them. At the dose of 
our civil war, lasting four years, some of our best corps and 
division generals, as well as staff-officers, were from civil life ; 
but I cannot recall any of the most successful who did not ex- 
press a regret that he had not received in early life instruction 
in the elementary principles of the art of war, instead of being 
forced to acquire this knowledge in the dangerous and expensive 
school of actual war. 

But the real difficulty was, and will be again, to obtain an 
adequate mmiber of good soldiers. We tried almost every sys 


tem known to modem nations, all with more or less success — 
volnntarj enlistments, the draft, and bought substitutes — ^and I 
think that all officers of experience will confirm my assertion 
that the men who voluntarily enlisted at the outbreak of the 
war were the best, better than the conscript, and far better than 
the bought substitute. When a regiment is once organized in a 
Btate, and mustered into the service of the United States, the 
officers and men become subject to the same laws of discipline 
and gOTemment as the regular troops. They are in no sense 
"militia," but compose a part of the Army of the United 
States, only retain their State title for convenience, and yet 
may be principally recruited from the neighborhood of their 
original organization. Once organized, the regiment should be 
kept full by recruits, and when it becomes difficult to obtain 
more recruits the pay should be raised by Congress, instead of 
tempting new men by exaggerated bounties. I believe it would 
have been more economical to have raised the pay of the soldier 
to thirty or even fifty dollars a month than to have held out the 
promise of three hundred and even six hundred doUars in tlie 
form of bounty. Toward the close of the war, I have often 
heard the soldiers complain that the " stay-at-home " men got 
better pay, bounties, and food, than they who were exposed to 
all the dangers and vicissitudes of the battles and marches at 
the front. The feeling of the soldier should be that, in every 
event, the sympathy and preference of his government is for 
him who fights, rather than for him who is on provost or guard 
duty to the rear, and, like most men, he measures this by the 
amount of pay. Of course, the soldier must be trained to obe- 
dience, and should be " content with his wages ; " but whoever 
has commanded an army in the field knows the difference be- 
tween a willing, contented mass of men, and one that feels a 
cause of grievance. There is a soul to an army as well as to the 
individual man, and no general can accomplish the fuU work of 
his army unless he commands the soul of his men, as well as 
their bodies and legs. 

The greatest mistake made in our civil war was in the mode 
of recruitment and promotion. When a regiment became re- 

88S laUTABT LESSONS OF THfi WAB. [1861-^85. 

dnced by the necesBaiy wear and tear of servioe, infltead of be- 
ing filled up at the bottom, and the Yacandee among the 
officers filled from the best non-commissioned officers and men, 
the habit was to raise new regiments, with new colonels, cap- 
tains, and men, leaving the old and experienced battalions to 
dwindle away into mere skeleton oiganizations. I belieye with 
the Yolnnteers this matter was left to the States eacoliisiTOlj, and 
I remembeor that Wisconsin kept her rq^iments filled with re- 
cmits, whereas other States generally filled their qnotas by new 
tegiments, and the result was that we estimated a Wisconsin re« 
giment eqnal to an ordinary brigade. I believe that five hnn- 
dred new men added to an old and experienced regiment were 
more valnable than a thonsand men in the form of a new re^^ 
ment, for the former by association with good, experieticed oap> 
tains, lieutenants, and non-commissiimed offioerB^ soon beoama 
veterans, whereas the latter were generally unavailable for a 
year. The German me&od of recruitment is rimpLy perfect, 
and there is no good reason why we should not foUow it sub- 

On a road, marching by the flank, it would be considered 
" good order " to have five thousand men to a mile, so that a 
full corps of thirty thousand men would extend six miles, but 
with the average trains and batteries of artillery the probabili- 
ties are that it would draw out to ten miles. On a long and 
regular march the divisions and brigades should alternate in the 
lead, the leading division should be on the road by the earliest 
dawn, and march at the rate of about two miles, or, at most, 
two and a half miles an hour, so as to i:each camp by noon. Even 
then the rear divisions and trains will hardly reach camp mnch 
before night. Theoretically, a marching column should preserve 
such order that by simply halting and facing to the right or left, 
it would be in line of battle ; but this is rarely the case, and 
generally deployments are made " forward," by conducting each 
brigade by the flank obliquely to the right or left to its approxi- 
mate position in liue of battle, and there deployed. In such a 
line of battle, a brigade of three thousand infantry would oc- 
cupy a mile of " front ; " but for a strong line of battle five 


thousand men with two batteries should be allowed to each mile, 
or a division would habitually constitute a double line with 
skirmishers and a reserve on a mile of ^^ front." 

The " feeding " of an army is a matter of the most vital im- 
portance, and demands the earliest attention of the general in* 
trusted with a campaign. To be strong, healthy, and capable of 
the largest measure of physical effort, the soldier needs about 
three pounds gross of food per day, and the horse or mule about 
twenty pounds. When a general first estimates the quantity of 
food and forage needed for an army of fifty or one hundred 
thousand men, he is apt to be dismayed, and here a good staff is 
indispensable, though the general cannot throw off on them the 
responsibility. lie must give the subject his personal attention, 
for the army reposes in him alone, and should never doubt the 
&ct that their existence overrides in importance all other con- 
siderations. Once satisfied of this, and that all has been done 
that can be, the soldiers are always willing to bear the largest 
measure of privation. Probably no army ever had a more 
varied experience in this regard than the one I commanded in 

Our base of supply was at Nashville, supplied by railways 
and the Cumberland Eiver, thence by rail to Chattanooga, a 
"secondary base," and thence forward a single-track railroad. 
The stores came forward daily, but I endeavored to have on 
hand a full supply for twenty days in advance. These stores 
were habitually in the wagon-trains, distributed to corps, divi- 
sions, and regiments, in charge of experienced quartermasters 
and commissaries, and became subject to the orders of the gen- 
erals commanding these bodies. They were generally issued on 
provision returns, but these had to be closely scrutinized, for 
too often the colonels would make requisitions for provisions 
for more men than they reported for battle. Of course, there 
are always a good many non-combatants with an army, but, after 
careful study, I limited their amount to twenty-five per cent, of 
the " effective strength," and that was found to be liberal. An 
ordinary army-wagon drawn by six mules may be counted on to 
cany three thousand pounds net, equal to the food of a full 


regiment for ojie day, but, by driving along beef-cattle, a com- 
missary may safely count the contents of one wagon as suflScient 
for two days^ food for a regiment of a thousand men ; and as a 
corps should have food on hand for twenty days ready for de- 
tachment, it should have three hundred such wagons, as a pro- 
vision-train ; and for forage, anmiunition, clothing, and other 
necessary stores, it was found necessary to have three hundred 
more wagons, or six hundred wagons in all, for a ccrpa cParmee. 

These should be absolutely under the immediate control of 
the corps commander, who will, however, jSnd it economical to 
distribute them in due proportion to his divisions, brigades, and 
even regiments. Each regiment ought usually to have at least 
one wagon for convenience to distribute stores, and each com- 
pany two pack-mules, so that the regiment may always be cer- 
tain of a meal on reaching camp without waiting for the larger 

On long marches the artillery and wagon-trains should al- 
ways have the right of way, and the troops should improvise 
roads to one side, unless forced to use a bridge in common, and 
all trains should have escorts to protect them, and to assist them 
in bad places. To this end there is nothing like actual experi- 
ence, only, unless the officers in command give the subject their 
personal attention, they will find their wagon-trains loaded 
down with tents, personal baggage, and even the arms and 
knapsacks of the escort. Each soldier should, if not actually 
^' sick or wounded," carry his musket and equipments contain- 
ing from forty to sixty rounds of ammunition, his shelter-tent, 
a blanket or overcoat, and an extra pair of pants, socks, and 
drawers, in the form of a scarf, worn from the left shoulder to 
the right side in lieu of knapsack, and in his haversack he 
sliould carry some bread, cooked meat, salt, and coffee. I do not 
believe a soldier should be loaded down too much, but, includ- 
ing his clothing, arms, and equipment, he can carry about fifty 
pounds without impairing his health or activity. A simple ciU- 
culation will show that by such a distribution a coi-ps will thus 
carry the equivalent of five hundred wagon-loads — an immense 
relief to the trains. 


Where an army is near one of our many large navigable 
riyers, or has the safe nse of a railway, it can usually be sup- 
plied with the full army ration, which is by far the best fur- 
nished to any army in America or Europe; but when it is 
compelled to operate away from such a base, and is dependent 
on its own train of wagons, the commanding officer must exer- 
cise a wise discretion in the selection of his stores. In my 
opinion there is no better food for man than beef -cattle driven 
on the hoof, issued liberally, with salt, bacon, and bread. Coffee 
has also become almost indispensable, though many substitutes 
were found for it, such as Indian-corn, roasted, ground, and 
boiled as coffee ; the sweet-potato, and the seed of the okra- 
plant prepared in the same way. All these were used by the 
people of the South, who for years could procure no coffee, but 
I noticed that the women always begged of us some real coffee, 
which seems to satisfy a natural yearning or craving more 
powerful than can be accounted for on the theory of habit. 
Therefore I would always advise that the coffee and sugar ra- 
tion be carried along, even at the expense of bread, for which 
there are many substitutes. Of these, Indian-corn is the best 
and most abundant. Parched in a frying-pan, it is excellent 
food, or if ground, or poimded and boiled with meat of any 
sort, it makes a most nutritious meal. The potato, both Irish 
and sweet,' forms an excellent substitute for bread, and at Savan- 
nah we found the rice also suitable, both for men and animals. 
For the former it should be cleaned of its husk in a homiuv 
block, easily prepared out of a log, and sifted with a coarse corn- 
bag ; but for horses it should be fed in the straw. During the 
Atlanta campaign we were supplied by our regular commissa- 
ries with all sorts of patent compoimds, such as desiccated vege- 
tables, and concentrated milk, meat-biscuit, and sausages, but 
somehow the men preferred the simpler and more familiar 
forms of food, and usuaDy styled these " desecrated vegetables 
and consecrated milk." "VVe were also supplied liberaDy with 
lime-juice, sauerkraut, and pickles, as an antidote to scurvy, and 
I now recall the extreme anxiety of my medical director. Dr. 
Elittoe, about the scurvy, which he reported at one time as spread 


ing and imperiling the army. This occurred at a crisis about 
Kenesaw, when the raiboad was taxed to its utmost capacity to 
provide the necessary ammunition, food, and forage, and could 
not possibly bring us an adequate supply of potatoes and cab- 
bage, the usual antiscorbutics, when providentially the black- 
berries ripened and proved an admirable antidote, and I have 
known the skirmish-line, without orders, to fight a respectable 
battle for the possession of some old fields that were full of 
blackberries. Soon, thereafter, the green com or roasting-ear 
came into season, and I heard no more of the scurvy. Our 
country abounds with plants which can be utilized for a preven- 
tion to the scurvy ; besides the above are the persimmon, the 
sassafras root and bud, the wild-mustard, the " agave," turnip- 
tops, the dandelion cooked as greens, and a decoction of the ordi- 
nary pine-leaf. 

For the more delicate and costly articles of food for the sick 
we relied mostly on the agents of the Sanitary Commission. I do 
not wish to doubt the value of these organizations, which gained 
so much applause during our civil war, for no one can question 
the motives of these charitable and generous people ; but to be 
honest I must record an opinion that the Sanitary Commission 
should limit its operations to the hospitals at the rear, and should 
never appear at the front. They were generally local in feel- 
ing, aimed to furnish their personal friends and neighbors with 
a better class of food than the Government supplied, and the 
consequence was, that one regiment of a brigade would receive 
potatoes and finiit which would be denied another regiment close 
by. Jealousy would be the inevitable result, and in an army all 
parts should be equal ; there should be no " partiality, favor, or 
affection." The Government should supply all essential wants, 
and in the hospitals to the rear will be found abundant oppor- 
tunities for the exercise of all possible charity and generosity. 
During the war I several times gained the ill-will of the agents of 
the Sanitary Commission because I forbade their coming to the 
front unless they would consent to distribute their stores equally 
among all, regardless of the parties who had contributed them. 

The sick, wounded, and dead of an army are the subjects of 


the greatest possible anxiety, and add an immense amount of 
labor to the well men. Each regiment in an active campaign 
shonld have a surgeon and two assistants always close at hand, 
and each brigade and division should have an experienced sur- 
geon as a medical director. The great majority of wounds and 
of sickness should be treated by the regimental surgeon, on the 
ground, under the eye of the colonel. As few should be sent 
to the brigade or division hospital as possible, for the men always 
receive better care with their own regiment than with strangers, 
and as a rule the cure is more certain ; but when men receive 
disabling wounds, or have sickness likely to become permanent, 
the sooner they go far to the rear the better for all. The tent 
or the shelter of a tree is a better hospital than a house, whose 
walls absorb fetid and poisonous emanations, and then give them 
back to the atmosphere. To men accustomed to the open air, 
who live on the plainest food, wounds seem to give less pain, 
and are attended with less danger to life than to ordinary sol- 
diers in barracks. 

"Wounds which, in 18G1, would have sent a man to the hos- 
pital for months, in 1865 were regarded as mere scratches, rather 
the subject of a joke than of sorrow. To new soldiers the sight 
of blood and death always has a sickening effect, but soon men 
become accustomed to it, and I have heard them exclaim on see- 
ing a dead comrade borne to the rear, " Well, Bill has turned up 
Ms toes to the daisies." Of course, during a skirmish or battle, 
armed men should never leave their ranks to attend a dead or 
wounded comrade — this should be seen to in advance by the colo- 
nel, who should designate his musicians or company cooks as 
hospital attendants, with a white rag on their arm to indicate 
their office. A wounded man should go himself (if able) to the 
surgeon near at hand, or, if he need help, he should receive it 
from one of the attendants and not a comrade. It is wonderful 
how soon the men accustom themselves to these simple rules. 
In great battles these matters call for a more enlarged attention, 
and then it becomes the duty of the division general to see that 
projjer stretchers and field-hospitals are ready for the wounded, 
and trenches are dug for the dead. There should be no real 


neglect of the dead, because it has a bad effect on the living ; 
for each soldier values himseK and comrade as highly as though 
he were living in a good house at home. 

The regimental chaplain, if any, usually attends the burials 
from the hospital, should make notes and communicate details 
to the captain of the company, and to the family at home. Of 
course it is nsnaUy impossible to mark the grave with names, 
dates, etc., and consequently the names of the "unknown" 
in our national cemeteries equal about one-half of all the dead. 

Very few of the battles in which I have participated were 
fought as described in European text-books, viz., in great masses, 
in perfect order, manoeuvring by corps, divisions, and brigades. 
"We were generally in a wooded country, and, though our lines 
were deployed according to tactics, the men generally fought in 
strong skirmish-lines, taking advantage of the shape of ground, 
and of every cover. "We were generally the assailants, and in 
wooded and broken countries the " defensive " had a positive 
advantage over us, for they were always ready, had cover, and 
always knew the ground to their immediate front ; whereas we, 
their assailants, had to grope our way over unknown ground, 
and generally found a cleared field or prepared entangle- 
ments that held us for a time under a close and withering fire. 
Earely did the opposing lines in compact order come into actual 
contact, but when, as at Peach-Tree Creek and Atlanta, the lines 
did become commingled, the men fought individually in every 
possible style, more frequently with the musket clubbed than 
with the bayonet, and in some instances the men clinched like 
wrestlers, and went to the ground together, Europeans frequent- 
ly criticised our war, because we did not always take full advan- 
tage of a victory ; the true reason was, that habitually the woods 
served as a screen, and we often did not realize the fact that our 
enemy had retreated till he was already miles away and was 
again intrenched, having left a mere shirmish-line to cover the 
movement, in turn to fall back to the new position. 

Our war was fought with the muzzle-loading rifle. Toward 
the close I had one brigade (Walcutt's) armed with breech-load- 
ing "Spencer's;" the cavalry generally had breach-loading car- 


bines, "Spencer's" and "Sharp's," both of which were good 

The only change that breech-loading arms will probably make 
in the art and practice of war will be to increase the amount 
of ammunition to be expended, and necessarily to be carried 
along; to stiU further "thin out" the lines of attack, and to re- 
duce battles to short, quick, decisive conflicts. It does not in 
the least affect the grand strategy, or the necessity for perfect 
oi^gaiodzation, drill, and discipline. The companies and battalions 
will be more dispersed, and the men will be less under the im- 
mediate eye of their officers, and therefore a higher order of 
intelligence and courage on the part of tlie individual soldier 
will be an element of strength. 

When a regiment is deployed as skirmishers, and crosses an 
open field or woods, tmder heavy fire, if each man runs forward 
from tree to tree, or stump to stump, and yet preserves a good 
general alignment, it gives great confidence to the men them- 
selves, for they always keep their eyes well to the right and left, 
and watch their comrades ; but when some few hold back, stick 
too dose or too long to a comfortable log, it often stops the 
line and defeats the whole object. Therefore, the more we 
improve the fire-arm the more will be the necessity for good 
oi^ganization, good discipline and intelligence on the part of the 
individual soldier and officer. There is, of course, such a thing 
as individual courage, which has a value in war, but famiHarity 
with danger, experience in war and its common attendants, and 
personal habit, are equally valuable traits, and these are the quali- 
ties with which we usually have to deal in war. All men natural- 
ly shrink from pain and danger, and only incur their risk from 
some higher motive, or from habit ; so that I would define true 
courage to be a perfect sensibility of the measure of danger, 
and a mental willingness to incur it, rather than that insensi- 
bility to danger of which I have heard far more than I have 
Been. The most courageous men are generally unconscious of 
possessing the quality; therefore, when one professes it too 
openly, by words or bearing, there is reason to mistrust it. I 
would further illustrate my meaning by describing a man of 


tme courage to be one wbo possesses a!l his faculties and senses 
perfectly wlien serious danger is actually present. 

Modem wars have not materially changed the relatire valuea 
or proportions o£ the several anus of service : infantry, artillery, 
cavalry, and engineers. If any thing, the infantry haa been in- 
creased in value. The danger of cavalry attempting to charge 
infantry armed with breech-loading rifles ■was fully illustrated 
at Sedan, and with us very frequently. So improbable ha* 
Buch a thing become that we have omitted the infantry-equai-e 
from our recent tactice. Still, cavalry against cavalry, and as 
auxiliary to infantry, will always be valuable, while all great 
wars will, as heretofore, depend chiefly on the infantry. Artil- 
lery is more valuable with new and inexperienced troops tbac 
with Teterans, In the early stages of the war the field^nns 
often bore the proportion of six to a thooBand men ; but toward 
the close of the war one gun, or at most two, to a thousand men, 
was deemed enough. Sieges, such as characterized the wars of 
the last century, are too slow for this period of the world, and 
the Prussians recently almost ignored them altogether, pene- 
trated Franco between the forts, and left a superior force " in 
observation," to watch the pimson and accept ils Eiirrcnder 
when the greater events of the war ahead made further resist- 
ance useless; but earth-forts, and especially field-works, will 
hereafter play an important part in ware, because they enable a 
minor force to hold a superior one in check for a timey and 
time is a most yalnable element in all wars. It was one of 
Prof. Mahan's maxima that the spade waa as useful in war as 
the musket, and to this I will add the axe. The habit of in- 
trenching certainly does have the effect of making new troops 
timid. When a line of battle is once covered by a good para- 
pet, made by the engineers or by the labor of the men themselves, 
it does require an effort to make them leave it in the face of 
danger; but when the enemy is intrenched, it becomes abso- 
lutely necessary to permit each brigade and division of the 
troops immediately opposed to throw up a corresponding trench 
for their own protection in case of a sudden sally. We invaria- 
bly did this in all our recent campaigns, and it bad no ill effect, 


thongli sometiines our troops were a little too slow in leaving 
fheir weU-covered liues to assail the enemy in position or on re- 
treat. Even onr skirmisliers were in the habit of rolling logs 
together, or of making a lunette of rails, with dirt in front, to 
cover their bodies ; and, though it revealed their position, I can- 
not say that it worked a bad effect ; so that, as a rule, it may 
safely be left to the men themselves. On the "defensive," 
there is no doubt of the propriety of fortifying ; but in the as- 
sailing army the general must watch closely to see that his men 
do not neglect an opportunity to drop his precautionary de- 
fenses, and act promptly on the "offensive" at every chance. 

I have many a time crept forward to the skirmish-line to 
aval myself of the cover of the pickets' " little fort," to observe 
more closely some expected result; and always talked famil- 
iariy with tiie men, and was astonished to see how well they 
comprehended the general object, and how accurately they were 
informed of the state of facts existing miles away from their 
particular corps. Soldiers are very quick to catch the general 
drift and purpose of a campaign, and are always sensible when 
they are well conunanded or well cared for. Once impressed 
with this fact, and that they are making progress, they bear 
cheerfully any amount of labor and privation. 

In camp, and especially in the presence of an active enemy, 
it is much easier to maintain discipline than in barracks in time 
of peace. Crime and breaches of discipline are much less fre- 
quent, and the necessity for courts-martial far less. The cap- 
tain can usually inflict all the punishment necessary, and the 
colonel should always. The field-oflScers' court is the best form 
for war, viz., one of the field-officers — the lieutenant-colonel or 
major — can examine the case and report his verdict, and the 
colonel should execute it. Of course, there are statutory of- 
fenses which demand a general court-martial, and these must be 
ordered by the division or corps commander ; but the presence 
of one of our regular civilian judge-advocates in an army in the 
fidd would be a first-class nuisance, for technical courts always 
work mischief. Too many courts-martial in any command are 
evidence of poor discipline and inefficient officers. 

I 308 

inilTAEY LESSONS OF THE WAR. [18Cl-'fl5. 

For the rapid tranemission of orders in an army covering a 
largQ space of ground, the mflgnetic telegraph is bj far the best, 
though habitually the paper and pencil, with good mounted or- 
derlies, ansTrer every pui-poee. I have little faith in the Eignal- 
Bervice by flags and torches, though we always used them ; be- 
cause, almost invariably when they were most needed, the view 
was oat off by intervening trees, or by mists and fogs. There 
was one notable, instance in my experience, when the Eigottl- 
flags carried a message of vital importance over the beads of 
Ilood's army, which had interposed between me and Allatoona, 
and had broken the telegraph-wires — as recorded in Chapter 
XIX. ; but the value of the magnetic telegraph in war can- 
not be exaggerated, as was illustrated by the perfect concert 
of action between the armies in Virginia and Geor^a during 
ISti-t. Hardly a day intervened when General Grant did not 
know the exact state of facts with me, more than fifteen hundred 
miles away as the wires ran. So on the field a thin insulated 
wire may be run on improvised stakes or from tree to tree for 
six or more miles in a couple of hours, and I have seen operators 
80 skillful, thiit by cutting the wire they would receive a mes- 
sage with their tongnes from a distant station. As a matter of 
course, the ordinary commercial wires along the railways form 
the usual telegraph-lines for an army, and these are ea^y re- 
paired and extended as the army advances, but each army and 
wing should have a Bmall party of Bkilled men to pot np the 
■field-wire, and take it down when done. This is far better than 
the signalflags and torches. Our commercial tel^;Taph-lines 
vill always supply for war enough skillfal operators 

The value of railways is also fully reoognized in war quite as 
mnch as, if not more so than, in peace. The Atlanta campaign 
would simply have been impossible withont the noe of the rail- 
roads from Lonisville to Nashville — one hundred and eighty-five 
miles — from Nashville to Chattanooga — one hundred and fifty- 
one miles — and from Chattanoc^ to Atlanta— one hondred and 
thirty-seven miles. Every mile of this " single track " was eo 
delicate, that one man could in a minute have broken or moved 
a mil, bnt our tiaiua osnallj earned along the toola and means 


to repair snch a break. We had, however, to maintain strong 
goards and garrisons at each important bridge or trestle — the 
destniction of which would have necessitated time for rebuild- 
ing. For the protection of a bridge, one or two log block- 
houses, two stories high, with a piece of ordnance and a small 
infantry guard, usually sufficed. The block-house had a small 
parapet and ditch about it, and the roof was made shot-proof by 
earth piled on. These points could usually be reached only by 
a dash of the enemy's cavalry, and many of these block-houses 
gaocessf ully resisted serious attacks by both cavalry and artillery. 
The only block-house that was actually captured on the main 
was the one described near AUatoona. 

Our trains from Nashville forward were operated under mili- 
tary rules, and ran about ten miles an hour in gangs of four trains 
of ten cars each. Four such groups of trains daily made one 
hundred and sixty cars, of ten tons each, carrying sixteen hun- 
dred tons, which exceeded the absolute necessity of the army, 
and allowed for the accidents that were common and inevitable. 
But, as I have recorded, that single stem of railroad, four hun- 
dred and seventy-three miles long, supplied an army of one hun- 
dred thousand men and thirty-five thousand animals for the pe- 
riod of one hundred and ninety-six days, viz., from May 1 to No- 
vember 12, 1864. To have delivered regularly that amount of 
food and forage by ordinary wagons would have required thirty- 
six thousand eight hundred wagons of six mules each, allowing 
each wagon to have hauled two tons tw-enty miles each day, a 
simple impossibility in roads such as then existed in that region 
of country. Therefore, I reiterate that the Atlanta campaign 
was an impossibility without these railroads ; and only then, be- 
cause we had the men and means to maintain and defend them, 
in addition to what were necessary to overcome the enemy. Ha- 
bitually, a passenger-car will carry fifty men with their necessary 
baggage. Box-cars, and even platform-cars, answer the purpose 
well enough, but they should always have rough board-seats. 
For sick and wounded men, box-cars filled with straw or bushes 
were usually employed. Personally, I saw but little of the 
practical working of the railroads, for I only turned back once 


as far as Eesaca ; but I had daily reports from tlie engineer in 
charge, and officers who came from the rear often explained to 
me the whole thing, with a description of the wrecked trains all 
the way from Nashville to Atlanta. I am convinced that the 
risk to life to the engineers and men on that railroad fully 
equaled that on the skirmish-line, called for as high an order 
of courage, and fully equaled it in importance. Still, I doubt 
if there be any necessity in time of peace to organize a corps 
specially to work the military railroads in time of war, because 
in peace these same men gain all the necessary experience, pos- 
sess all the daring and courage of soldiers, and only need the 
occasional protection and assistance of the necessary train-guard, 
which may be composed of the furloughed men coming and 
going, or of details made from the local garrisons to the rear. 

For the transfer of large armies by rail, from one theatre of 
action to another by the rear — the cases of the transfer of the 
Eleventh and Twelfth Corps — General Hooker, twenty-three 
thousand men — ^f rom the East to Chattanooga, eleven hundred 
and ninety-two miles in seven days, in the fall of 1863 ; and 
that of the Army of the Ohio — General Schofield, fifteen thou- 
sand men — from the valley of the Tennessee to Washington, 
fourteen hundred miles in eleven days, en route to North Caro- 
lina in January, 18G5, are the best examples of which I have 
any knowledge, and reference to these is made in the report 
of the Secretary of War, Mr. Stanton, dated November 22, 

Engineer troops attached to an army are habitually em- 
ployed in supervising the construction of forts or field works 
of a nature more permanent than the lines used by the troops 
in motion, and in repairing roads and making bridges. I had 
several regiments of this kind that were most useful, bat as a 
rule we used the infantry, or employed parties of freedmen, 
who worked on the trenches at night while the soldiers slept, 
and these in turn rested by day. Habitually the repair of the 
railroad and its bridges was committed to hired laborers, like 
the English navvies, under the supervision of Colonel W. W. 
"Wrio^ht, a railroad-engineer, who was in the military service at 


the time, and his successful labors were frequently referred tc 
in the oflSdal reports of the campaign. 

• For the passage of rivers, each army corps had a pontoon- 
train with a detachment of engineers, and, on reaching a river, 
the leading infantry division was charged with the labor of put- 
ting it down. Generally the single pontoon-train could pro- 
vide for nine hundred feet of bridge, which sufficed ; but when 
the rivers were very wide two such trains would be brought 
together, or the single train was supplemented by a trestle- 
bridge, or bridges made on crib -work, out of timber found 
near the place. The pontoons in general use were skeleton 
frames, made with a hinge, so as to fold back and constitute a 
wagon-body. In this same wagon were carried the cotton canvas 
cover, the anchor and chains, and a due proportion of the balks, 
chesses, and lashings. All the troops became very familiar with 
their mechanism and use, and we were rarely delayed by reason 
of a river, however broad. I saw, recently, in Aldershot, Eng- 
land, a very complete pontoon-train ; the boats were sheathed 
with wood and felt, made very light ; but I think these were 
more liable to chafing and damage in rough handling than 
were our less expensive and rougher boats. On the whole, I 
would prefer the skeleton frame and canvas cover to any style 
of pontoon that I have ever seen. 

In relation to guards, pickets, and vedettes, I doubt if any 
discoveries or improvements were made during our war, or in 
any of the modem wars in Europe. These precautions vary 
with the nature of the country and the situation of each army.. 
When advancing or retreating in line of battle, the usual skir- 
mish-line constitutes the picket-line, and may have ''reserves," 
but usually the main line of battle constitutes the reserve ; and 
in this connection I will state that the recent innovation intro- 
duced into the new infantry tactics by General Upton is admi- 
rable, for by it each regiment, brigade, and division deployed, 
sends forward as "skirmishers" the one man of each set of 
fours, to cover its own front, and these can be recalled or recn- 
forced at pleasure by the bugle-signal. 

For flank-guards and rear-guards, one or more aompaniea^ 


Bhonld be detached under their own officers, instead of making 
up the guard by detailing men from the several compames. 

For regimental or camp guards, the details should be made 
according to existing army regulations; and all the guards 
should be posted early in the evening, so as to afford each senti- 
nel or vedette a chance to study his ground before it becomes 
too dark. 

In like manner as to the staff. The more intimately it 
comes into contact with the troops, the more useful and valu- 
able it becomes. The almost entire separation of the staff from 
the line, as now practised by us, and hitherto by the French, 
has proved mischievous, and the great retinues of staff-officers 
with which some of our earlier generals began the war were 
simply ridiculous. I don't believe in a chief of staff at all, and 
any general commanding an army, corps, or division, that has 
a staff-officer who professes to know more than his chief, is to 
be pitied. Each regiment should have a competent adjutant, 
quartermaster, and commissaiy, with two or three mediod offi- 
cers. Each brigade commander should have the same staff, with 
the addition of a couple of young aides-de-camp, habitually 
i?elected from the subalterns of the brigade, who should be good 
riders, and intelligent enough to give and explain the orders of 
their general. 

The same staff will answer for a division. The general in 
command of a separate army, and of a corps d^armee^ should 
have the same professional assistance, with two or more good 
engineers, and his adjutant-general should exercise all the func- 
tions usually ascribed to a chief of staff, viz., he should possess 
the ability to comprehend the scope of operations, and to make 
verbally and in writing all the orders and details necessary to 
carry into effect the views of his general, as well as to keep the 
returns and records of events for the information of the iiext 
higher authority, and for history. A bulky staff implies a divi- 
sion of responsibility, slowness of action, and indecision, whereas 
a small staff implies activity and concentration of purpose. The 
smallness of General Grant's staff throughout the civil war 
forms the best model for future imitation. So of t^nts, offi- 


cers' fnmitare, etc, etc. In real war these should all be dis- 
carded, and an army is efficient for action and motion exactly in 
the inverse ratio of its impedimenta. Tents should be omitted 
altogether, save one to a regiment for an office, and a few for 
the division hospital. Officers should be content with a tent 
fly, improvising poles and shelter out of bushes. The tents 
cPabriy or shelter-tent, carried by the soldier himself, is all-suffi- 
cient. Officers should never seek for houses, but share the con- 
dition of their men. 

A recent message (July 18, 187i) made to the French As- 
sembly by Marshal MacMahon, President of the French Eepub- 
lic, submits hjprajet de loi, with a report prepared by a board of 
French generals on "army administration," which is full of 
information, and is as applicable to us as to the French. I quote 
from its very beginning: "The misfortunes of the campaign 
pf 1870 have demonstrated the inferiority of our system. . . . 
Two separate organizations existed with parallel functions — ^the 
* general' more occupied in giving direction to his troops than 
in providing for their material wants, which he regarded as the 
special province of the staff, and the * intendant ' (stafE) often 
working at random, taking on his shoulders a crushing burden 
of functions and duties, exhausting himself with useless efforts, 
and aiming to accomplish an insufficient service, to the disap- 
pointment of everybody. This separation of the administra- 
tion and command, this coexistence of two wiUs, each inde- 
pendent of the other, which paralyzed both and annulled the 
dualism," was condemned. It was decided by the board that 
this error should be " proscribed " in the new military system. 
The report then goes on at great length discussing the provi- 
sions of the "new law," which is desaibed to be a radical 
change from the old one on the same subject. While conceding 
to the Minister of "War in Paris the general control and super- 
vision of the entire military establishment primarily, especially 
of the annual estimates or budget, and the great depots of supply, 
it distributes to the commanders of the corps darmee in time 
of peace, and to all army commanders generally in time of war, 
the absolute command of the money, provisions, and stores. 


with the necessary staff-officers to receive, issue, and account 
for them. I quote further : " The object of this law is to con- 
fer on the commander of troops whatever liberty of action the 
case demands. He has the power even to go beyond the regu- 
lations, in circumstances of urgency and pressing necessity. 
The extraordinary measures he may take on these occasions 
may require their execution without delay. The staff-officer 
has but one duty before obeying, and that is to submit his 
observations to the general, and to ask his orders in writing. 
With this formality his responsibility ceases, and the responsi- 
bility for the extraordinary act falls solely on the general who 
gives the order. The officers and agents charged with supplies 
are placed under the orders of the general in command of the 
troops, that is, they are obliged both in war and peace to obey, 
with the single qualification above named, of first making their 
observations and securing the written order of the general." 

With us, to-day, the law and regulations are that, no matter 
what may be the emergency, the commanding general in Texas, 
New Mexico, and the remote frontiers, cannot draw from the 
arsenals a pistol-cartridge, or any sort of ordnance-stores, without 
first procurmg an order of the Secretary of War in Washington. 
The commanding general — ^though intrusted with the lives of 
his soldiers and with the safety of a frontier in a condition of 
elu'onic war — cannot touch or be trusted with ordnance-stores or 
property, and that is declared to be the law I Every officer of 
the old army remembers how, in 1801, we were hampered with 
the old blue army-regulations, which tied our hands, and that 
to do any thing positive and necessary we had to tear it all to 
pieces — cut the red-tape, as it was called — a dangerous thing for 
an army to do, for it was calculated to bnng the law and au- 
thority into contempt ; but war was upon us, and overwhelming 
necessity overrides all law. 

This French report is well worth the study of our army-offi- 
cers, of all grades and classes, and I will only refer again, casu- 
ally, to another part, wherein it discusses the subject of military 
correspondence : whether the staff-officer should correspond di- 
rectly with his •chief in Paris, submitting to his general copies, 


or whether he flhonld be required to carry on his correspondence 
through his general, so that the latter could promptly forward 
the communication, indorsed with his own remarks and opin- 
ions. The latter is declared by the board to be the only safe 
rule, because " the general should never be ignorant of any thing 
that is transpiring that concerns his command." 

In this country, as in France, Congress controls the great 
questions of war and peace, makes all laws for the creation and 
government of armies, and votes the necessary supplies, leaving 
to the President to execute and apply these laws, especially 
the harder task of limiting the expenditure of public money to 
the amount of the annual appropriations. The executive power 
is further subdivided into the seven great departments, and to 
the Secretary of War is confided the general care of the military 
eistablishment, and his powers are further subdivided into ten 
distinct and separate bureaus. 

The chiefis of these bureaus are under the immediate orders 
of the Secretary of War, who, through them, in fact commands 
the army from "his ofBce," but cannot do so " in the field" — an 
absurdity in military if not civil law. 

The subordinates of these staff-corps aud departments are 
selected and chosen from the army itself, or fresh from West 
Point, and too commonly construe themselves into the elite^ as 
made of better clay than the common soldier. Thus they sepa- 
rate themselves more and more from their comrades of the line, 
and in process of time realize the condition of that old officer of 
artillery who thought the army would be a delightful place for 
a gentleman if it were not for the d d soldier ; or, better still, 
the conclusion of the young lord in " Henry IV.," who told 
Hany Percy (Hotspur) that " but for these vile guns he would 
himself have been a soldier." This is all wrong ; utterly at vari- 
ance with our democratic form of government and of universal 
experience; and now that the French, from whom we had 
copied the system, have utterly "proscribed" it, I hope that our 
Congress will follow suit. I admit, in its fullest force, the 
strength of the maxim that the civil law should be superior to 


the military in time of peace ; that the army ahoold be at all 
times subject to the direct control of Congress ; and I assert 
that, from the formation of om* Government to the present day, 
the Eegular Army has set the highest example of obedience to 
law and authority ; but, for the very reason that our army is 
comparatively so very small, I hold that it should be the best 
possible, organized and governed on true military principles, 
and that in time of peace we should preserve the "habits and 
usages of war," so that, when war does come, we may not again 
be compelled to suffer the disgrace, confusion, and disorder of 

The (?onmianding of&cers of divisions, departments, and 
posts, should have the amplest powers, not only to command 
their troops, but all the stores designed for their use, and the 
o£5cers of the staff necessary to administer them, within the area 
of their command ; and then with fairness they could be held 
to the most perfect responsibility. The President and Secre- 
tary of "War can command the army quite as well through these 
generals as through the subordinate staff-oflBcers. Of course, 
the Secretary would, as now, distribute the funds according to 
the appropriation bills, and reserve to himself the absolute con- 
trol and 6uper\'i8ion of the larger arsenals and depots of supply. 
The error lies in the law, or in the judicial interpretation there- 
of, and no code of army regulations can be made that meets the 
case, until Congress, like the French Corps Legulatif^ utterly 
annihilates and "proscribes" the old law and the system which 
has gro^vn up under it. 

It is related of Napoleon that his last words were, " T^te- 
d'armee ! " Doubtless, as the shadow of death obscured his 
memorj^, the last thought that remained for speech was of some 
event when he was directing an important " head of column." 
I believe that every general who has handled armies in battle 
must recall from his own experience the intensity of thought on 
some similar occasion, when by a single command he had given 
the finishing stroke to some complicated action ; but to me re- 
em's another thought that is worthy of record, and may en- 


courage others who are to follow ns in our profession. I never 
saw the rear of an army engaged in battle but I feared that 
some calamity had happened at the front — ^the apparent confu- 
sion, broken wagons, crippled horses, men lying about dead and 
maimed, parties hastening to and fro in seeming disorder, and 
a general apprehension of something dreadful about to ensue ; 
all these signs, however, lessened as I neared the front, and 
there the contrast was complete— perfect order, men and horses 
full of confidence, and it was not unusual for general hilarity, 
laughing, and cheering. Although cannon might be firing, 
the musketry clattering, and the enemy's shot hitting close, 
there reigned a general feeling of strength and security that 
bore a marked contrast to the bloody signs that had drifted rap- 
idly to the rear; therefore, for comfort and safety, I surely 
. would rather be at the front than the rear line of battle. So 
also, on the march, the head of a column moves on steadily, 
while the rear is alternately halting and then rushing forward 
to close up the gap ; and all sorts of rumors, especially the 
worst, float back to the rear. Old troops invariably deem it a 
special privilege to be in the front — ^to be at the "head of col- 
umn " — ^because experience has taught them that it is the easiest 
and most comfortable place, and danger only adds zest and stim- 
ulus to this fact. 

The hardest task in war is to lie in support of some position 
or battery, under fire without the privilege of returning it ; or 
to guard some train left in the rear, within hearing but out of 
danger; or to provide for the wounded and dead of some corps 
which is too busy ahead to care for its own. 

To be at the head of a strong colunm of troops, in the exe- 
cution of some task that requires brain, is the highest pleasure 
of war — a grim one and terrible, but which leaves on the mind 
and memory the strongest mark ; to detect the weak point of an 
enemy's line ; to break tlirough with vehemence and thus lead 
to victory; or to discover some key-point and hold it with 
tenacity ; or to do some other distinct act which is afterward 
recognized as the real cause of success. These all become mat- 


ters that are never forgotten. Other great difficulties, expe- 
rienced by every general, are to measure truly the thousand- 
and-one reports that come to him in the midst of conflict ; to 
preserve a clear and well-defined purpose at every instant of 
time, and to cause all efforts to converge to that end. 

To do these things he must know perfectly the strength and 
quality of each part of his own army, as well as that of his oppo- 
nent, and must be where he can personally see and observe with 
his own eyes, and judge with his own mind. No man can proper- 
ly command an army from the rear, he must be " at its front ; " and 
when a detachment is made, the commander thereof should be 
informed of the object to be accomplished, and left as free as 
possible to execute it in his own way ; and when an army is 
divided up into several parts, the superior should always attend 
that one which he regards as most important Some men think 
that modem armies may be so regulated that a general can sit 
in an office and play on his several columns as on the keys of 
a piano ; this is a fearful mistake; The directing mind must be 
at the very head of the army — ^must be seen there, and the 
effect of his mind and personal energy must be felt by every 
officer and man present Avith it, to secure the best results. 
Every attempt to make war easy and safe will result in humilia- 
tion and disaster. 

Lastly, mail facilities should be kept up with an army if pos- 
sible, that officers and men may receive and send letters to their 
friends, thus maintaining the home influence of infinite assist- 
ance to discipline. Newspaper correspondents with an army, 
as a rule, are mischievous. They are the world's gossips, pick 
up and retail the camp scandal, and gradually drift to the 
headquarters of some general, who finds it easier to make repu- 
tation at home than with his own corps or division. They are 
also tempted to prophesy events and state facts which, to an 
enemy, reveal a purpose in time to guard against it. Moreover, 
they are always bound to see facts colored by the partisan or polit- 
ical character of their own patrons, and thus bring army officers 
into the political controversies of the day, which are always mis- 


chievoufl and wrong. Yet, bo greedy are the people at krge for 
war news, that it is doubtful whether any army commander can 
exclude aU reporters, without bringing down on himself a clamor 
that may imperil his own safety. Time and moderation must 
bring a just solution to this modem difficulty. 




W. F'letcher Johnson, Esq. 


Maj.-Gen. O. O. Howard, U. S. A. 



Aiding THE Pactfic Railroad — A Fool*s Errand to Mexico — Political 
Intrigues at Washington — The Tenure of Office Affair — Work 
among the Indians — A Trip to Europe — The Belknap Scandal — 
Sherman's Speech on Military Honor — Travels in the North- 
west — Yellowstone Park — ^Writing His Memoirs — Life in New 
York — Death of Mrs. Sherman. 

Soon after the "Grand Review" and his farewell to his 
feithful followers, Sherman went with his family to Chicago, 
to assist at a large fair held for the benefit of impoverished 
soldiers* families ; thence to Lancaster, Louisville and Nash- 
ville, visiting old friends. He was then, on June 27, 1865, 
put in command of the Military Division of the Missis- 
sippi, afterward changed to the Missouri, with headquarters 
at St. Louis. Immediately his attention was turned to the 
Pacific Railroad, then in course of construction. Many 
years before, when that great enterprise was scarcely 
dreamed of as a possibility, he had written of it to his 
brother, urging that such a road should be built, for the 
unification of the country, and saying that he would gladly 
give his life to see it successfully carried through. It was 
with much satisfaction that he witnessed the opening of the 
first division of sixteen and a half miles of the Union 
Pacific, westward from Omaha. He admired the energy 
with which the road was pushed forward, and looked upon 



its completion, on July 15, 1869, as "one of the greatest 
and most beneficent achievements " of the human race. It 
was to facilitate the building of the road by protecting it 
from the Indians that Sherman persuaded the President, in 
March, 1 866, to establish the new Military Dc^Kutment of * 
the Platte and to place strong bodies of troops at various 
points along the line. 

As the mustering out of the army proceeded, many 
changes in organization occurred. . The most notable was 
that of July 25, 1866, when Grant was made a full General 
and Sherman was made lieutenant General. At the same 
time political feeling was running high at Washington. 
President Johnson had virtually left the Republican party, 
and was at loggerheads with the msyority of Congress. 
Grant was looked to as the coming President, and accord- 
ingly many of Johnson's friends manifested much jealousy 
and hostility toward him. Sherman was in the west and so 
kept alopf from these controversies and intrigues, for which 
he had no love. But he maintained his old friendship with 
Grant, and inclined toward his side of every disputed ques- 

While travelling on duty in New Mexico, in September, 
1866, he was summoned to Washington, in haste. Going 
thither, he reported to Grant, who told him he did not know 
why the President had sent for him, unless in connection 
with Mexican affairs. Maximilian, supported by French 
troops, still held the imperial crown of that country, but 
was steadily being driven to the wall by the Republicans, 
who had elected Juarez President. The United States was 
about to send the Hon. Lewis Campbell thither as Minister, 
accredited to Juarez as the rightful head of the State, and 
President Johnson had ordered Grant to accompany him as 
an escort. Grant told Sherman that he would decline to 


obey this order as an illegal one, on the ground that the 
President had no right to send him out of the country on a 
diplomatic errand unaccompanied by troops ; he believed it 
was a trick of Johnson's, to get rid of him. 

Then Sherman went to the President, who was very glad 
to see him. Said Johnson : " I am sending General Grant 
to Mexico, and I want you to command the army here in 
his absence." " But," said Sherman, " Grant will not go T* 
That startled Johnson, and he began arguing to show the 
need there was of Grant's going. Sherman repeated the 
positive statement that Grant would not go, and added that 
he did not think the President in that matter could afford 
to quarrel with the General. The upshot of the matter 
was, that Johnson decided to send Sherman instead of 
Grant, and Sherman consented to go, believing that thus 
he was preventing an open rupture between Grant and the 

Sherman and Campbell went to Mexico, and spent some 
weeks in trying to find Juarez, who was said to be with 
his army in the field. Not succeeding in their quest, they 
returned to New Orleans, and by Christmas Sherman was 
back at St. Louis, convinced that he had been sent as a 
ruse, on that idle errand. The President, he believed, 
simply wanted to send Grant somewhere to get him out of 
the way of his own political ambition. 

Now came on the famous " Tenure of Office " affair. 

Congress enacted, in March, 1867, a law providing that no 

civil oflScer appointed for a definite term, by and with the 

advice and consent of the Senate, should be removed before 

the expiration of that term except with the consent of the 

Senate. On August 5, following, the President demanded 

Stanton's resignation as Secretary of War. Stanton, under 

the above named law, refused it. A week later the President 



suspended him and appointed Gtant to ad in his stead* 
Things remained in this state until January 13, 1868 ; when 
the Senate disapproved the President's action. Grant 
immediately gave up the Secretaryship, handed t&e key of 
the office to Sherman, and went back to army headquarters. 
Sherman took the key to Stanton and gave it to him. 

Sherman was anxious to make peace, and strongly urged 
the President to appoint General J. D. Cox, then Govonor 
of Ohio, to succeed Stanton, thinking he would be accepted 
by the Senate. This the President would not do, and the 
Storm increased. At the beginning of Fdi>rttaiy Sherman 
returned to St Louis, glad to get away from the polidcai 
intrigues of Washington, and stead&stly refused to return 
unless ordered, though the President himself requested him 
to do so. Then, determined to bring him back, the President 
assigned him to the command of the Division of the Atlantic. 
Sherman tried to avoid this appointment, and threatened 
to resign rather than return East. Had the President's 
plans been carried out there would have been at Washington 
these officers : The President, commander in chief of the 
Army under the Constitution ; the Secretary of War, 
commander in chief under the recognition of Congress ; the 
General of the Army ; the Lieutenant General of the Army ; 
the General commanding the Department of Washington ; 
and the commander of the post at Washington. And the 
garrison of Washington consisted of an infantry brigade 
and a battery of artillery ! Sherman protested so vigorously 
against such an arrangement that the President finally agreed 
to let him stay at St Louis, and then appointed Lorenzo 
Thomas Secretary of War ad interim. And soon the 
famous impeachment trial came. 

Sherman was appointed, in July, 1867, a member of the 
commission to establish peace with certain Indian tribes. 



In that capacity he travelled widely through the Indian 
country and had many conferences with the chiefs. He 
proposed that the great Indian reservations should be or- 
ganized under regular territorial governments, but the plan 
was not approved at Washington. 

So the time passed until March 4, 1869, when Grant was 
inaugurated as President. Sherman was then made Gen- 
eral, and Sheridan Lieutenant-General. Under this ar- 
rangement Sherman of course had to return to Washing- 
ton, and there he renewed his old association with George 
H. Thomas, whom, however, he presently assigned, at 
Thomas's request, to the command at San Francisco. 
There the hero of Chickamauga and Nashville soon died, 
and Sherman thought his end was hastened by supposed 
ingratitude. Congress ought, in Sherman's opinion, to 
have made Meade, Sheridan and Thomas all Lieutenant- 
Generals, dating their commissions respectively with 
" Gettysburg," " Winchester," and " Nashville." 

On the death of General Rawlins, in the fell of 1869, 
Sherman was called upon to act for a time as Secretary of 
War. The experience did not please him. There was too 
much red tape, and too much division of authority, and he 
was glad to be relieved by General Belknap. In August, 
1 87 1, Rear- Admiral Alden asked him to go to Europe 
with him, in the frigate Wabash, and Sherman joyously 
accepted the invitation, as he had long wished to go abroad 
but had never yet done so. They sailed on November 1 1, 
and Sherman did not return until September 22 of the next 
year. He visited almost every part of Europe and Egypt, 
and had an opportunity of observing European methods in 
the great German army which had just been overrunning 

Life at Washington, with Belknap's assumptions, was now 


increasingly distasteful to him, and he obtained permission 
from the President to remove the army headquarters to St 
I«ouis. Thither he went in the &U of i874» and once more 
was contented and happy. In the spring of 1876, however, 
he was recalled to Washington, on account of die Bdknap 
scandal. General Belknap, Secretary of War^ was charged 
with corrupt practices, and resigned, to avoid impeachment 
Sherman was much shocked, for he had always esteemed 
Belknap highly. Referring to the case in a speech at a 
public banquet at St Louis, before returning to Washii^- 
ton, he said : 

"The army of 1776 was the rdiige of all who loved lib- 
erty for liberty's sake, and who were willing to test their 
sincerity by the fire of battle; and we claim that the army 
of 1876 is the best friend of liberty, good order, and Gov- 
ernment, and submits to any test that may be imposed. Our 
ancestors never said the soldier was not worthy of his hire ; 
that the army was a leech on the body politic; that a stand- 
ing army of 20,000 men endangered the liberties of 40,- 
000,000 of people. These are modem inventions, modern 
party-cries to scare and confuse the ignorant. We are not 
of those who subscribe so easily to the modern doctrine of 
evolution, that teaches that each succeeding generation is 
necessarily better than that which went before, but each 
tree must be tested by its own fruit, and we can point with 
pride to our Sheridan, Hancock, Schofield, McDowell, and 
a long array of Brigadier-Generals, Colonels, Captains and 
Lieutenants, who, for intelligence, honor, integrity and self- 
denial, will compare favorably with those of any former 
epoch. We point with pride to our army, scattered through 
the South, along our Atlantic, Gulf and Lake forts, and in 
the great West, and claim that in all the qualities of good 
soldiers they are second to none. I see that some of you 


shake your heads and whisper Belknap. Why? What was 
his relation to the army? He was a Cabinet Minister, a 
civil officer, did not hold a commission in the army at all. 
We contend that when he was an officer he was an honor- 
able man and rendered good service, and that this entitles 
him to charitable consideration. * Lead us not into temp- 
tation * is a prayer some of us seem to have forgotten, and 
we of the army can truthfully say that this offence, be it 
what it may, is not chargeable to the army, for he was not 
subject to military law or jurisdiction. 

" At this moment the air is full of calumny, and it is 
sickening to observe that men usually charitable and just, 
are made to believe that all honesty and virtue have taken 
their flight from earth ; that our National Capital is reeking 
with corruption ; that fraud and peculation are the rule, and 
honesty and fidelity to trust the exception. I do not be- 
lieve it, and I think we should resist the torrent. Our 
President has surely done enough to entitle him to absolute 
confidence, and can have no motive to screen the wicked 
or guilty. At no time in the history of the country, have 
our courts of law, from the Supreme Court at Washington 
down to the District Courts, been entitled to more respect 
for their learning and purity ; and Congress is now, as it 
has ever been and must be from its composition, a repre- 
sentative body, sharing with the people its feelings and 
thoughts, its virtues and vices. If corruption exist, it is 
with the people at large, and they can correct the evil by 
their own volition. If they have grown avaricious and 
made money their God, they must not be surprised if 
their representatives and servants share their sin. What 
are the actual facts ? We have recently passed through a 
long civil war, entailing on one moiety of the country deso- 
lation and ruin, — on all a fearful debt, — States, counties, 

•nd cities follow the lashion, until the whole land became 
deeply in debt. The debts are now due, and bear heavily 
in the shape of taxes on our homes, on property, and busi- 

" Again, the war called millions to arms, who dropped 
their professions and business, and found themselvM without 
employment when the war was over. These naturally 
turncil to the National Government for help ; and the pres- 
sure for oRice, at all times great became simply irresistible. 
The power to appoint to these offices is called 'patronage,' 
and IS common to all Governments. Then, again, arose a 
vast number of claims for damages for seizures and loss of 
property by acts of war. These all involved large sums of 
money, and money now is, as it always has been, tlie cause 
of a life-struggle — of corruption. Yes, money is the 
cause of corruption to-day as always. Men will toil for it, 
murder for it, steal for it, die for it. Though officers and 
soldiers are simply men subject to all tempations and vices 
of men, we of the army feel, or rather think we feel, more 
in the spirit of Burns : 

" ' For gold the merchant plows the main. 
The farmer plows the manor; 
But glory is the soldier's priie. 
The soldier's wrealth is honor.' " 

Sherman set out in July, 1877, for 3 tour throng the 
Indian country and the &r Northwest. He was absent 
from home 115 days, and travelled nearly 10,000 miles. 
After visiting Tongue River and the Big Horn, he went to 
the Yellowstone National Park. In rdalii^ the stoty of 
his adventures, he said : 

" Descending Mount Washburn, by a trail dvo^^ 
«-oods, one emerges into the meadows or sprii^ 4«l of 

■ s. 


which Cascade Creek takes its water, and, following it to 
near its mouth, you camp and walk to the great falls and 
the head of the Yellowstone canyon. In grandeur, majesty, 
and coloring, these, probably, equal any on earth. The 
painting by Moran in the Capitol is good, but painting and 
words are unequal to the subject. They must be seen to 
be appreciated and felt. 

** Gen. Poe and I found a jutting rock, about a mile below 
the Seron Falls, from which a perfect view is had of the 
Seron Falls canyon. The upper falls are given at 125 feet 
and the lower at 350. The canyon is described as 2,000 feet. 
It is not 2,000 immediately below the Seron Falls, but may 
be lower down, for this canyon is thirty miles long, and 
where it breaks through the range abreast of Washburn 
may be 2,000 feet. Just below the Seron Falls, I think 
1,000 feet would be nearer the exact measurement; but it 
forms an actual canyon, the sides being almost vertical, and 
no one venturing to attempt a descent. It is not so much 
the form of this canyon, though fantastic in the extreme, 
that elicited my admiration, but the coloring. The soft 
rocks through which the waters have cut a way are of the 
most delicate colors, — buff, gray, and red, — all so perfectly 
blended as to make a picture of exquisite finish. The falls 
and canyon of the Yellowstone will remain to the end of 
time objects of natural beauty and grandeur to attract the 
attention of the living. 

"Up to this time we had seen no geysers or hot springs, 
but the next day, eight miles up from the falls, we came to 
Sulphur Mountain, a bare, naked, repulsive hill, not of large 
extent, at the base of which were hot, bubbling springs, 
with all the pond crisp with sulphur, and six miles from 
there up, or south, close to the Yellowstone, we reached and 
camped at Mud Springs. These also are hot, most of them 


muddy. Water slushed around as in a boiling pot. Some 
were muddy water and others thick mud, puffing up just 
like avast pot of mush. Below the falls of the Yellowstone 
is a rapid, bold current of water, so full of real speckled 
trout, weighing from six ounces to four and a half pounds, 
that, in the language of a settler, it is 'no trick at all to 
catch thent.' They will bite at an artificial fly, or, belter, 
at a live grasshopper, which abound here; but above the 
fails the river is quiet, flowing between low, grassy banks, 
and finally ending, or rather beginning, in the Yellowstone 
Lake, also alive with real speckled trout. Below the falls 
these trout are splendid eating, but above, by reason of the 
hot water, some of the fish are wormy and generally 
obnoxious by reason thereof, though men pretend to dis- 
tinguish the good from the bad by the color of the spots, 
I have no hesitation in pronouncing the Yellowstone, from 
the Big Horn to the source, the finest trout-fishing stream 
on earth. 

" From the Mud Springs the trail is due west, and crosses 
the mountain range which separates the Yellowstone from 
the Madison, both tributaries to the Missouri, descends this 
tributary to the West Fork of the Madison, and here is the 
Lower Geyser Basin. It would require a volume to de- 
scribe these geysers in detail. It must suffice now for me 
to say that the Lower Geyser Basin presents a series of hot 
springs or basins of water coming up from below hot 
enough to scald your hand, boil a ham, eggs, or anything 
else, clear as crystal, with basins of every conceivable shape. 
from the size of a quill to actual lakes loo yards across. lo 
walking among and around these one feels that in a 
moment he may break through and be lost in a species of 

" Six miles higher up the West Madison is the Uppct 


Geyser Basin, the spouting geysers, the real object and aim 
of our visit To describe these in detail would surpass my 
ability or the compass of a letter. They have been de- 
scribed by Lieutenants Duane, Hayden, Strong, Lord Dun- 
raven, and many others. The maps by Major Ludlow, of the 
Engineers, locate several geysers accurately. We reached 
the Upper Geyser Basin at 12 M. one day and remained 
there till 4 P. M. of the next. During that time we saw 
the old * Faithful * perform at intervals varying from sixty- 
two minutes to eighty minutes. The intervals vary, but 
the performance only varies with the wind and sun. The 
cone, or hill, is of soft, decaying lime, but immediately 
about the hole, which is irregular, about six feet across, 
the incrustation is handsome, so that one can look in safety 
when the geyser is at rest." 

Returning to p'ort Ellis, they next rode to Helena, the 
Capital of Montana Territory, 106 miles in one day, by a 
relay of stages. They visited old Fort Benton, established 
long ago by the American Fur Company, also Fort Shaw, 
and then striking over the country to Fort Missoula, and 
then across the Bitter Root Mountains through Idaho and 
across Washington Territory to the Pacific coast 

Sherman devoted much time in his later years to literary 
work, chiefly in the form of magazine articles, about the 
war, early days in California, and other topics of historic 
and general public interest In 1875 ^^ published his 
" Memoirs," a large volume recording his military career. 
Its appearance caused a great sensation, as no other prom- 
inent army officer had, at that time, done such a thing as to 
write a history of his own career. The book was written 
in Sherman's characteristic style, breezy, vigorous, frank, 
fearless. Many of its statements of fact and opinion bore 
hardly upon others and provoked contradiction. Sherman 


took all critidsms upon it kindly, and in suhseqiient ecfitions 
prihted them, together with many other messages of praise, 
in an appendix to the book. Moreover, there were, as 
Sherman himself acknowledged, many errors in the book, 
originating in faults of memory and otherwise. As &st as 
these were pointed out and proved, Sherman c o rre c ted them. 

Referring one day, in conversation, to the criticisms of his 
" Memoirs," he said : — ^ 

'' They amuse me, make me laugh, and frequently, I am 
glad to say, serve me a good purpose by calling attention to 
real defects and errors which in time will be corrected. I 
have here a copy of my book with each error, so &r dis^ 
covered, marked and carefully annotated When the woik 
of correcting is completely finished, they will be made 
public, either during my lifetime or when I sun gone. These 
' Memoirs' have been the subje